Julien Guerrier will start the final round of the Hauts de France Golf Open with a share of the lead after carding a four under par 67 to sit alongside Jack Doherty at the top of the leaderboard.
The home favourite started the day four shots back in Saint Omer, but he reduced the deficit to just one shot after the front nine by making four birdies and a bogey to reach the turn in 33.
After another gain at the tenth the 31 year old took the lead for the first time this week, and the former Amateur Champion went on to set the clubhouse target after a further birdie and a bogey.
Guerrier’s six under par total was later matched by Scotland’s Doherty, who also signed for a four under par score of 67, and the Frenchman believes luck will be a factor in deciding tomorrow’s winner.
“When you are in Saint Omer anything can happen,” said Guerrier, who has played in the last eight European Challenge Tour tournaments held at Aa Saint Omer Golf Club.
“You have to stay patient and make sure you are calm on the course because it is easy to lose your head when you make bogey here.
“It was a very solid day. I hit a lot of greens and I only made two mistakes – I lost my focus on the eighth and the 17th where I made bogeys.
“The greens here can be quite bumpy so it is easy to miss short putts – that’s when you can get frustrated. But I did not do that today, and I am very happy with my score.
“It was a bit calmer today but normally when that is the case on the Challenge Tour you see really low scores. But here it is different – it is like the US Open of the Challenge Tour.
“You have to fight on every hole and you can be very unlucky with the way the ball bounces here – the winner will definitely need some luck.
“The key for whoever is going to win tomorrow is just to stay patient.”
One shot behind Guerrier and Doherty are Portugal’s Ricardo Santos, Spain’s Scott Fernandez and Italians Lorenzo Gagli and Filippo Bergamaschi, who are all five under par.
Overnight co-leader Christopher Mivis is two off the pace alongside Sweden’s Marcus Kinhult, Chile’s Mark Tullo and the Netherlands’ Daan Huizing, who followed up his course record-breaking second round of 62 with a two under par 69 in northern France.