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Thomas Voeckler (Europcar) ready to defend his race lead
Voeckler to lead motivated team of classics specialists
French team Europcar has announced its line-up for the upcoming Paris-Nice stage race, scheduled March 6-13. Thomas Voeckler will lead the outfit also including Giovanni Bernaudeau, Damien Gaudin, Cyril Gautier, Vincent Jerome, Alexandre Pichot, Pierre Rolland and Sébastien Turgot.
Directeur sportif Dominique Arnould said for the team selection, the management had riders who showed good early fitness and motivation to do this particular race. "We will have a very good team at the start with breakaway specialists. Saïd Haddou and Sébastien Chavanel were a little bit short to be awarded a spot, and Giovanni Bernaudeau, Damien Gaudin and Vincent Jerome made it known very early that they wanted to take part in the Race to the Sun," Arnould commented.
"Thomas Voeckler will lead the team. He showed at the Tour Méditerranéen that his condition is getting better and better, just like Pierre Rolland who finished the race very strong. Cyril Gautier will also make an impact for sure. Sébastien Turgot and Alexandre Pichot will be racing in the kind of weather conditions they like: they are two classics riders who love the cold."
In the absence of Sébastien Chavanel, the team's last man for mass sprint finishes will be Turgot. "Our selection is more than competitive and we hope to shine on all levels," Arnould concluded.