KISS rocker Gene Simmons to promote Indy Racing League

Don't be surprised to find a checkered flag soon amid the black-and-white KISS face paint of tongue-wagging bassist Gene Simmons.

Simmons and marketing partner Richard Abramson have signed a deal to promote the Indy Racing League, the open-wheeled circuit announced. The promotion campaign features a 91-second anthem called "I Am Indy" sung by Simmons, backed by the band BAG.

The lyrics, which repeat the song's title "I Am Indy," preach about individuality and top-speed performance: "I am everything I want/ I have everything I need/ I know exactly what to do/ 'cuz I am Indy."

"It's a personal statement that's a sort of personal allegiance to the United States of Indy," Simmons said.

The Indianapolis-based IRL posted the song on its Web site,

Details of the rest of the campaign were being kept under wraps _ a spokesman declined to release the length and cost of the contract _ but Simmons said it would include an Indy-related clothing line.

Abramson said the campaign's goal is to get more people to follow and understand auto racing.

"It already is pretty hip and cool," he said. "We want to involve Hollywood more, we want to involve music people in it more. We want to get more individual people involved as opposed to flocks of people."

The IRL is trying to increase its fan base, the AP reported. The IRL's flagship race is the Indianapolis 500, held every year on Memorial Day weekend.

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