Lewis Hamilton says he was thrown bananas and regularly racially abused at school.
The Mercedes driver, 38, says his school years were “probably the most traumatic and difficult part of my life”.
Hamilton said: “I was already bullied when I was six.
“At this particular school, I was one of three kids of color and just bigger, stronger, bully kids threw me out most of the time.”
Speaking to the On Purpose podcast, the seven-time Formula 1 champion detailed a number of abusive racist terms he was sent back to at school.
Hamilton added: “Not knowing where you stand has been difficult for me.
“When you go to history class and there’s no people of color in the history that they were teaching us. I was like, ‘Where are the people who look like me?’
“In my [secondary] at school, there were six or seven black children out of 1,200 children, and three of us were constantly kicked out of the principal’s office. The director just told us about it – and especially me.
“I really felt the system was against me and I was swimming against the tide. There were a lot of things that I suppressed.
“I didn’t think I could go home and tell my parents that these kids kept calling me [racist terms], or I was bullied or beaten up at school today. I didn’t want my dad to think I wasn’t strong.”
In recent years, Hamilton has embarked on a campaign to increase diversity in motorsport.
He has set up a commission to study why ethnic minorities are underrepresented in sport, launched his Mission 44 campaign to find ways to support young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, and is working with Mercedes to increase diversity within of their team, and in F1.
Hamilton enters his 17th season in F1 in March and enters the final year of his last contract with Mercedes.
Team principal Toto Wolff said earlier this month he was confident Hamilton would accept a new contract to continue racing beyond the end of this year.
“We have a full year left,” Wolff said. “We’re so aligned – over the past 10 years our relationship has grown.
“It’s just a matter of him physically being back in Europe, sticking our heads together, struggling for a bit, then leaving the room with white smoke after a few hours.”