Bristol were made to work hard for victory in their first Parker Pen Shield clash of the season, edging a close match 34-28 at Bourgoin yesterday.
Shane Drahm gave Bristol a perfect start, slotting over a penalty after two minutes to settle any visiting nerves.
But 1997 winners Bourgoin hit back through centre Alexandre Peclier's two penalties. The Shoguns did not let that affect their play though and were in front again in the 16th minute when Matt Carrington crossed for a converted try.
Peclier again tied the scores and added two more penalties, although a Jason Little touchdown, converted by Drahm, gave the English side a 17-15 half-time advantage.
The French belatedly found their try-scoring touch in the second period, but wing David Rees secured the points in a hard-fought encounter, touching down twice.
In Pool Two a two-try haul from Laurent Giolitti helped 1998 winners Colomiers romp to a 36-12 win over Madrid in the Spanish capital.
In yesterday's other Shield fixture, French team Montauban overpowered 11-time Italian champions,Rovigo, 41-23.Reuse content