coming out as gay.The 52-year-old Olympic champion, who first realised she was gay aged 17, said she finally feels free after hiding her sexuality out of fear of persecution.She came out in a candid interview with the Sunday Mirror, in which she explained she ‘needed to do this now, for me’. ‘Sometimes I cry with relief,’ she told the publication.‘The moment this comes out, I’m essentially getting rid of that fear.’Dame Kelly, who has been branded an ‘inspiration’ for sharing her story, has been blown away by the reaction since and revealed her journey has been recorded in a documentary for ITV which is set to air next week.Taking to Instagram, she penned: ‘The support has been overwhelming- I actually don’t think I can take it all in and process it right now! ❤️ So here it is, the start of a new chapter in my long life book.’The sporting hero added that her late mother Pam would have been ‘so proud of my announcement’.