Round Two was completed Saturday, after heavy overnight showers and a saturated Lyon Golf Club forced the conclusion of the Fridays play until late Saturday afternoon.
Yet, through 36 holes, local favorite Marc Farry (65) has emerged as the outright leader at 7-under-par 133.
He is one shot clear of fellow Frenchman Gregory Havret (67) and Anders Hansen (68) of Denmark. Two shots back at 5-under are a host of others, including Jose Maria Olazabal (69) and Daren Lee (71).
With rain out of the forecast for the remainder of the weekend, Rounds 3 and 4 will commence on Sunday, with players teeing off as early as 7:10am local time.
Said Farry of the conditions thus far: It was difficult getting up so early and then playing so late. It is amazing ' the course has dried so well and the greens are fantastic.
Im not so nervous and will take the last day as it comes.
If the 41-year-old were nervous at all, there would be no shame in it, however. Farry is looking to become the first Frenchman to win the countrys national title in 32 years. Jean Garaialde was the last to do so at St. Nom la Breteche in 1969
It is always nice to lead in your home country, Farry mused.
While a French victory would undoubtedly be the most popular, Hansen warns that pressure and expectations can be very difficult to deal with when at the top.
You have got to get up there a couple of times in order to make it, he claims. You have to try to be up there, feel the pressure and learn from that. Today I was up there and felt down the stretch that I was hitting good shots all the way.
Im up there with two French guys so let them take the pressure and see what happens.
Havret, for one, does not sound worried in the least, however.
Im looking forward to tomorrow, he stated.
Full-field scores from the Novotel Perrier Open de France