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Wednesday
Mar052014

"Dancing with the Stars" Contestants Look Ahead to New Season

ABC/Todd Wawrychuk(LOS ANGELES) -- Drew Carey has already set a goal for himself as he approaches the new season of ABC's Dancing with the Stars: survive the first week.

The Price Is Right host is one of 12 celebrities who were officially named to the Dancing with the Stars cast on Tuesday morning. When ABC News Radio asked him if he's afraid of any aspect of the competition, Carey quipped, "I'm afraid of being the first to get voted off."

Carey has tagged Meryl Davis and Charlie White, the U.S. ice dancing team that just won the gold medal at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, to be two of the front-runners. He says, "I think they're going to go far in the competition, if anybody."

On Dancing with the Stars, Davis and White will be opponents, not teammates. In fact, Davis tells ABC News Radio she and White have developed a rivalry in dance rehearsals.

"There's certainly a little bit of competitive nature there, and [my partner] Maks [Chmerkovskiy] said that he's already picked up on it. But I don't think there will be any serious smack talk," she comments.

Former Wonder Years actress Danica McKellar is excited to enter the ballroom for various reasons. She says the experience will represent a new chapter for her, after becoming a mom and going through a divorce in recent years.

"I'm going to get out there and just do something for myself and treat myself to some ballroom dancing lessons and get to feel sexy and fun," she says.

Among the other notable celebrities taking part in Dancing with the Stars this season: The Real Housewives of Atlanta cast member NeNe Leakes; Big Time Rush star and musician James Maslow; long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad, who last year became the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage; and 2014 Paralympic Games snowboarder Amy Purdy, who becomes the first star to compete on the show with two prosthetic legs.

ABC has added a few new wrinkles to season 18 of Dancing with the Stars. In a new twist, called "The Switch Up," all couples will have to switch pro partners during the season.

The show will also have a new co-host: Erin Andrews, who replaces Brooke Burke-Charvet and joins Tom Bergeron.

The season begins on March 17.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio