Sale started with a 33-10 win over Biarritz in Salford before backing up that positive beginning with an equally impressive bonus-point triumph at Worcester, results that leave them with nine points from a possible 10 and a four-point cushion at the head of the standings.
The Sharks came close to shocking Saracens in the Aviva Premiership on Saturday and had won their two previous fixtures at Harlequins and at home to Worcester. They have been boosted by the return of centre cum wing Will Addison since the last round of European games and announced new deals for prop Ross Harrison and fly-half Nick Macleod last week.
Oyonnax have a formidable record on home soil, though, having beaten Heineken Cup holders RC Toulon, runners up ASM Clermont Auvergne, 2012 Amlin Challenge Cup kings Biarritz, French Champions Castres Olympique and Heineken Cup Pool 6 front runners Perpignan in front of their own fans.
Their proud record continued when they cruised to a 26-9 domestic success over Brive at the weekend, meaning Stade Francais are still the only side to have won at Oyonnax's home ground so far this season. Last season's PROD2 winners could only draw their Amlin Challenge Cup opener at Charles Mathon with Worcester courtesy of a last-gasp penalty from Conrad Barnard, however, with their 26-6 defeat at Biarritz in Round 2 leaving them at the bottom of the table with just two points to their name.