Stade Français Paris is now the only team to have reached two Heineken Cup finals but not got their hands on the main prize - and they are banking on making it third time lucky.
The cosmopolitan French capital club went down at the final hurdle in 2001 and 2005 to Leicester Tigers and Toulouse respectively but top Pool 4 and are four points clear of second placed Ulster Rugby.
And that makes the back-to-back meetings with the 1999 champions of Europe - starting at Ravenhill on Saturday and then on to a ground-breaking contest in Brussels a week later - potential group qualification deciders.
And the teams are far from being strangers on the big stage, the Round 3 meeting will be the 10th time the teams have met in the Heineken Cup with Max Guazzini's team holding a 5-4 advantage. And star scrum half Julien Dupuy knows both what it takes to reach a final of European club rugby's elite tournament - and the heartbreak of missing out on a winners' medal.
Dupuy was in the Leicester Tigers team who lost 19-16 to Leinster at Murrayfield in May and has already made his mark in the tournament with his new club. Dupuy kicked the Parisians to victory over Bath Rugby at The Rec in Round 2 as he broke Bath hearts for the second season running.
The French international claimed 21 points in the 29-27 win, slotting a last-minute penalty goal to snatch what had seemed an unlikely victory. That just rubbed salt in Bath wounds as the former Leicester scrum half had inflicted a similar fate on the 1998 Champions when he crossed for a late try as the Tigers knocked out their bitter rivals at the quarter-final stage of last season's Heineken Cup.
But for all that Dupuy insists the French giants still have plenty to do if they are finally to be crowned European champions for the first time in their history. Long-term planning can lead to a loss of focus on immediate objectives and Dupuy says Stade are simply concentrating on their double header with Ulster Rugby as they aim to continue to control Pool 3.
"We will try to reach the quarter-finals - that is what we'll concentrate on," said the player who kicked four penalty goals in helped Les Bleus to a 20-13 victory over world champions South Africa at Le Stadium in Toulouse last month and has also played Heineken Cup rugby for Biarritz Olympique.
"But for the moment, we are happy. We are first in the Pool and we've won our opening two games. We will just try to play well for the remaining games in our Pool. We go to Ulster on Saturday and that will be a big challenge - it will certainly be hard to win there.
"After the first game against Edinburgh, we wanted to produce a big performance against Bath because we knew they are a very physical team. "It was a good win for us but it's very difficult to think about reaching the final because there are a lot of big teams who want to get there as well."