Karina Smirnoff is confident that she and partner Apolo Ohno have what it takes to bring home the mirror ball trophy on this season of Dancing With the Stars, but there is one thing that stands in the way – fellow competitor Gilles Marini!
“Gilles is definitely in it to win it,” Karina told In Touch at the 2012 Do Something Awards. “I think everybody is great [but] he’s ready.”
Though Karina and Apolo appear have the upper hand – Apolo was the season four champ — Gilles and his former partner Cheryl Burke just barely came in second place on season eight with less than one percent standing between him and first place.
“Apolo said he’s really, really nervous,” Karina admitted. “He thinks the show has really, really progressed from earlier seasons in terms of the level of choreography, the difficulty and the technique, so he’s like, this is not the same!”
Despite any changes, Karina and Apolo are prepared to do whatever it takes to come out victorious.
“I’m a workaholic and I like to spend like 10-12 hours in the studio and from what I hear, so does Apolo,” she says. “I really think we’ll be dancing 24-7, which might be really good for us. I just hope we are smart and don’t get injured!”
Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars premieres Sept. 24 on ABC.