The upcoming 18th season of Dancing With the Stars now has an official cast ready to compete through spring 2014, but some of the cast members could already have an advantage going into the competition.
The season 18 cast of DWTS has several athletes in the mix, all of which could take home the coveted Mirrorball Trophy. Ice dancers Meryl Davis and Charlie White just got back from competing in the Winter Olympics in Sochi, but both of them will be competing in the upcoming season with different partners.
Paraplegic snowboarder Amy Purdy is also in the cast this year and she is paired with five-time DWTS champion Derek Hough. Former NHL player Sean Avery is paired with last season's runner-up Karina Smirnoff. Diana Nyad is a long-distance swimmer who is used to practicing a routine for long periods of time. As athletes have traditionally done very well on Dancing With the Stars, all of them could have a chance at winning season 18.
There are also a number of television stars who could amass a big voting block to propel them forward in the competition. Candace Cameron Bure (Full House) and Danica McKellar (The Wonder Years) are among the '80s sitcom stars ready to compete this season. Big television personality NeNe Leakes is also in the mix; the reality star is paired with Tony Dovolani.
Drew Carey is among the most recognizable faces in the season 18 cast, known for his sitcom The Drew Carey Show and hosting The Price is Right. Billy Dee Williams is also a well-known celebrity for his role as Lando in the Star Wars franchise.
There is a pair of teen heartthrobs set to compete for the young girl vote in season 18. Australian pop singer Cody Simpson is partnered with newer dancer Witney Carson while Big Time Rush singer James Maslow is paired with Peta Murgatroyd.
Dancing With the Stars season 18 premieres Monday, March 17 at 8 p.m. on ABC.
Watch the official cast announcement for season 18 here: