Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton has opened up about his mental health struggles, admitting he has “a lot of difficult days” and suffers from loneliness on the tour.
The six-time world champion posted an emotional message on his social media channels this week, explaining the two very different sides of him – one being the “cut throat, hungry racer” people see on television and the other being a man “figuring life out, day by day.”
He also said he is struggling during the pandemic, with the bubble system adopted amid sport’s restart hard to cope with.
“You get lonely, you miss your friends and family, and with back-to-back race weeks it means there’s not much time for anything but work,” he wrote.
“So I’m grateful for the ones closest to me helping me to keep a balance, even if it’s just thru [sic] text, phone or FaceTime.
“I guess what I’m trying to say is, it’s never a bad thing to ask for help if you need it, or to tell somebody how you feel. Showing your vulnerable side doesn’t make you weak, instead, I like to think of it as a chance to become stronger.”
The Mercedes driver has won five of the seven races since the sport returned with a rescheduled calendar after lockdown and is currently in Monza for this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix.
When asked about his comments on loneliness and mental health, Hamilton said he was just trying to tell his fans the truth.
“I think as competitors, it’s not the first thing you think of doing, being open and expressing yourself,” he told reporters during a video press conference.
“But I think it’s really important, more important than what’s happening here.”
The 35-year-old, who has been a vocal supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement in recent months, has previously spoken out about his struggles.
In October last year, he posted a series of messages of social media saying he felt like “giving up on everything” with the world being in “such a mess.”
Hamilton is only two wins away from equaling his hero Michael Schumacher’s all-time record of 91 career wins.