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Paris-Nice a major objective for Europcar

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Romain Sicard (Europcar)

Romain Sicard (Europcar)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Bryan Coquard and Morgan Kneisky won the men's madison

Bryan Coquard and Morgan Kneisky won the men's madison
(Image credit: Guy Swarbrick)
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Bryan Coquard (Europcar)

Bryan Coquard (Europcar)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Bryan Coquard (Europcar)

Bryan Coquard (Europcar)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Thomas Voeckler is hoping for a good performance this week

Thomas Voeckler is hoping for a good performance this week
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Cyril Gautier (Team Europcar)

Cyril Gautier (Team Europcar)
(Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)

Recently crowned madison world champion Bryan Coquard returns to Team Europcar duty at Paris-Nice with teammate Thomas Voeckler captaining the eight rider squad for one of its major objectives in 2015. 

The team will look to Cyril Gautier and Romain Sicard to impress on GC after both riders were active at La Drôme Classic with Voeckler, who has won two stages (2011) and the mountains classification (2007) at the race, to provide the leadership on the road.

Coquard opened his 2015 account on the road last at last month's Etoile de Bessèges before competing at the Track World Championships in his native France where he teamed up with Morgan Kneisky for his first rainbow jersey. Despite claiming 12 professional wins on the road, Coquard is yet to claim victory in a WorldTour race although at last year's Paris-Nice he finished inside the top ten on four occasions. On his grand tour debut, the 22-year-old placed inside the top ten on seven occasions as he finished third in the points classification. He is the designated sprinter for the race.

Sicard, who posted his best grand tour result at last year's Vuelta a España by finishing 13th, makes a return to Paris-Nice after a two year absence. Having placed sixth at the 2014 edition of the race, Gautier is looking to improve on his best GC result at a WorldTour stage race.

With Europcar ending its sponsorship on the team at the end of the season, Voeckler and team manager Jean-René Bernaudeau have both stressed the importance of early season results to secure survival into 2016 and beyond.

Team Europcar for Paris-Nice: Bryan Coquard, Antoine Duchesne, Cyril Gautier, Yohann Gène, Bryan Nauleau, Romain Sicard, Angelo Tulik and Thomas Voeckler.