Does Bristol Palin have congrats for Dancing with the Stars champ Jennifer Grey?
"Oh of course!" Palin, 20, told UsMagazine.com after Tuesday's finale. "Jennifer did awesome!"
Although some predicted that the low-rated but buzzed-about Palin would sneak away with the mirrorball trophy, the young mom and political daughter placed third in the final tally of viewer votes and judges' scores. (Disney star Kyle Massey, 19, nabbed second place.)
"I feel like I accomplished a lot," the inexperienced dancer told Us, crediting her pro partner Mark Ballas. "He started from scratch on this whole thing, and I'm thankful that he took on this challenge."
Added the Alaskan: "I've just had the time of my life," she said, unintentionally referencing the theme song to Dirty Dancing, Grey's most famous film role.
Palin's most surprising part of the journey, she told Us: "I didn't expect to be so consumed by this and so into learning dances… in a good way!"
Meanwhile, the champ Grey, 50, told Us about her victory moment. "I was just blank!" Grey said of hearing her name called. "I was in a surrender moment…In the truest sense of the word, this journey was the gift."
The actress and mother (to daughter Stella, 8, with husband Clark Gregg) endured several surgeries for thyroid cancer and a neck injury prior to DWTS — and ruptured a disk after Monday's show.
"My family stood by me and let me go away for three months and do this day in and day out," Grey gushed. "[And] my doctors kept putting me together!"
Grey loved being a part of the DWTS franchise. "There's so much glamour and silliness," she said. "It's just a great gift to be a part of a show that brings people so much joy. That's really what I think dancing does."
She also told Us where her trophy will go: "The kid's room!" she said of her little girl Stella. "She deserves it. She earned it. She stood by me!"
Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!