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British Olympic track hopeful Tom Bosworth comes out as gay

The race walker has been in a happy relationship for the last few years.

Tom Bosworth
Tom Bosworth
J Kruger/British Athletics via Getty Images

Tom Bosworth, a champion race walker and Olympics 2016 hopeful for Britain, has come out publicly as gay in an interview with the BBC.

"It is a big decision but it's not one that's going to change my life personally, I don't think," Bosworth, 25, said. "I've been comfortable in my sexuality and in a really happy relationship for the last four-and-a-half years, so this isn't going to shock anybody who knows me.

"I'm really lucky. I've got a loving partner, great family behind me and a great setup in Leeds [where he lives]. Everyone is really supportive and really welcoming. ... But that's not the same for anybody else, unfortunately." (Note: Bosworth proposed marriage to his partner, Harry Dineley, in Rio on Aug. 15, 2016, during the Olympics).

Bosworth said he hopes to show other athletes that it is possible for elite athletes to come out. He said he made the decision now so that's it's a non-story should he qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics. He has gotten great support from his teammates but said that in the past, some competitors were cruel.

"I got called some really nasty names," he said. "They wouldn't call me by my name, they would literally refer to me as 'fag' or 'queer.' That's how they would direct the conversation to me. And they would find themselves funny, I think, and not many other people found them funny."

Bosworth said he was inspired by the coming out of British diver Tom Daley. "If he can do it, anybody can do it for sure. The pressure on him has to be huge," Bosworth said.

It's a great interview and you can watch it here.