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Monday, October 8, 2012
Castroneves talks 'DWTS,' splitting votes

By Lynn Hoppes



IndyCar great Helio Castroneves said he's hoping sports fans don't split the votes for the four athletes -- all past winners -- on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars."

Last week, Castroneves and pro partner Chelsie Hightower surprisingly finished in the bottom two. That was despite having a middle-of-the-pack score. With the results being based on 50 percent judges and 50 percent audience, it's not just how they perform that matters.

"Honestly, I don't know what we could have done differently on the dance floor. Being on the bottom was strange," said Castroneves, who won the fifth season of the dance elimination show. "I think fans are thinking the athletes will have enough followers to move on without them. They might have gotten too comfortable."

The fourth athletes -- Castroneves, Olympic gymnastic champion Shawn Johnson, Olympic speedskating champion Apolo Ohno and pro football Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith -- have shown some rust this season and need to figure out a way to separate from the path heading into the third week.

"For all of us, it's tough because there are so many champions on this show," Castroneves said. "The level of competition is tough. Having won already, you have to expect us to be better. I'm having a blast, though."

On Monday night, the 11 remaining dancers of the original 13, will be performing an unlearned dance. Here is what to expect: Castroneves (quickstep), Johnson (quickstep), Apolo (foxtrot) and Smith (paso doble). And on Tuesday, two couples will be sent home.

"I'm doing the best I can. I feel bad for Chelsie and the other pro dancers. They don't have any limits," Castroneves said. "If I think I'm going to get hurt, I'm going to stop. They don't stop. That's how badly they want to win."