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IMS announces Indy 500 national anthem singer

Jimmie Allen will sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" before drivers take off for 200 laps around the oval.
Credit: AP Photo/Mark Humphrey
Jimmie Allen performs "Best Shot" at the CMT Music Awards on Wednesday, June 5, 2019, at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn.

SPEEDWAY, Ind. — Platinum-selling country artist Jimmie Allen will sing the national anthem before this year's Indianapolis 500.

Indianapolis Motor Speedway announced the news Monday. The race is at 12:45 p.m. on Sunday, May 30. Allen will sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" before drivers race 200 laps around the oval.

With the release of his songs "Best Shot" and "Make Me Want To" in 2018, Allen became the first Black artist to start a career with two consecutive No. 1 songs on country radio.

"We are excited to welcome Jimmie to the Racing Capital of the World for a memorable and emotional Memorial Day weekend performance," IMS President J. Douglas Boles said in a press release. "The national anthem is a signature pre-race moment, and this year's rendition carries extra meaning as we prepare to welcome fans back to the Indy 500 and honor our frontline heroes."

Allen won New Male Artist of the Year at the Academy of Country Music Awards in April. He is also set to publish a picture book, "My Voice Is a Trumpet," on July 13.

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