Drew Lachey Talks Dancing All-Stars: 'The Runners-Up Are The Ones To Beat'

Drew Lachey took home the coveted mirror ball trophy on Season 2 of "Dancing with the Stars," but as he returns to the hit reality series for the All-Stars edition, the former boy band member has got his eye on his non-champ co-stars.

"I think the runners-up are the ones to beat because they still have that taste - they still want to win," Drew told AccessHollywood.com's Laura Saltman in an interview on Friday. "So, the runners-up are going to be the tough ones."

PLAY IT NOW: Drew Lachey Talks Joining Dancing With The Stars: All-Stars

While he did earn the trophy (knocking out runner-up Jerry Rice) in 2006, the competition has gotten even fiercer since Drew first hit the dance floor - a motivating factor in his decision to return to the ABC show.

"Every season has been a step up in talent level, aggressiveness and taking on the dances. So for me, that's a big reason of why I decided to come back," he explained. "Second season was great -- it was challenging, it was hard -- but I want to see how I hold up against some of the big boys that have done it in more recent seasons."

VIEW THE PHOTOS: Dancing With The Stars: All-Stars — The Cast!

As for whether he'd like to be partnered with his original pro, Cheryl Burke, Drew said he's prepared either way.

"If Cheryl and I dance together, we already know how to work together, we already know how far we can push each other. There's that history there," he said. "That being said, with a new partner, there's a new excitement of different skill sets, different choreography, different styles. So, there [are] pros and cons for both.

"Whoever gets Cheryl is gonna be happy," he added. "But I guarantee you I'll be set with whoever I get as well!"

VIEW THE PHOTOS: Boy Bands: Then & Now

"Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars" premieres on Monday, September 24 at 8/7c on ABC.

--Erin O'Sullivan

VIEW THE PHOTOS: ‘Dancing’s’ Mirrorball Winners: They Came, They Danced, They Conquered!

Copyright 2012 by NBC Universal, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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