“Like you [Sky Sports F1 presenter Karun Chandhok] and so many people around the world that have been subject to abuse, generally, stay quiet. Someone around them perhaps doesn’t stand up and say: ‘That’s not cool’. Some people probably feel uncomfortable. Those who are receiving abuse just take it.
“I was always the fighter. I was like: ‘I’m getting in the punch up’. It always just boiled me so deeply and I was always in trouble. Always in the headmaster’s office because I would defend myself. I was in a school that was predominantly white. The headmaster would never understand or even empathise with what I just experienced.
“So I had all this built up and that’s what I’ve channeled into my driving my whole life. As I get older, particularly this year, I realise part of the strength that I have is that I channeled that difficult time that I had into my driving.
“My Dad would always say: ‘Do your talking on the track’. When I wanted to react, my Dad held me back and said: ‘Do your talking on the track’. That wasn’t easy. Today the whole experience has brought up a lot of those old emotions and I really feel and empathise for those out there, from all different backgrounds, that have experienced [discrimination], felt like they couldn’t say anything, whether it’s in your workplace, whether it’s in school, whether it’s hanging with your friends.
“I just want to encourage people to speak out. Even if it’s not you that’s on the receiving end but you see it happen to someone or someone’s saying a sexist comment. You say: ‘That’s not cool’ and that’s going to help people educate themselves.”
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