Frenchman Julien Quesne had a three-shot lead midway through the third round of the Allianz Open de Lyon after reaching the turn in three under par.
Quesne bogeyed the first but picked up shots at the third, sixth, eighth and ninth to reach 11 under par overall, two clear of Italian Federico Colombo and Scotsman Craig Lee, who were one under and two under respectively at the halfway stage at Golf du Gouverneur.
Lee eagled the par five third for the second time in three days, and then added a birdie at the fifth, but he bogeyed the ninth to slip back.
Colombo was another to start his round with a bogey, but he fought back with birdies at the third and eighth to remain in contention.
Argentinian Daniel Vancsik was eight under after 12 holes, a score shared with Alessandro Tadini of Italy, Klass Eriksson of Sweden and French amateur Gary Stal.