Leeds Carnegie got off to a losing start in the Amlin Challenge Cup 29-19 at Bourgoin to continue their winless start to the new season.
Neil Back's men failed to reverse their domestic form in the Guinness Premiership after they were out-scored two tries to one at Stade Pierre Rajon.
Rudi Coetzee's early score was followed by David Janin while fly-half Alberto Di Bernardo landed six kicks to leave Leeds trailing 23-6 by half-time.
Leeds briefly hinted at what would have been a remarkable comeback when Samoan back-row Alfie Vaeluaga To'oala barged over six minutes into the second half.
Veteran fly-half Jason Strange converted and added two more penalties to his first half strikes to haul Leeds to within a try at 23-19.
But replacement and France international Benjamin Boyet stepped off the bench to land two more penalties, including a last-minute effort that denied Leeds a losing bonus point.
Connacht took an early lead on Pool Two with a comfortable 46-6 victory over Olympus Rugby XV Madrid.
The Spanish were only able to field an 18-man squad after being struck by a stomach bug before arriving in Galway and rarely troubled the Irish province.
Second-row Michael Swift and wing Fion Carr both crossed twice as Connacht ran in eight tries. Adrian Flavin, Mike McCarthy, Tiernan O'Halloran and Niva Ta'auso grabbed the others.
Former Australia fly-half Manny Edmonds, playing at scrum-half for Bayonne, scored 17 points including one of his teams eight tries in an emphatic 61-3 win against Roma in Pool Four.
Toulon did not need the boot of England's Jonny Wilkinson to get the better of French rivals Castres Olympique, as Luke Rooney scored in either half and Mike Henjak added a third try in a 33-17 win. Montauban beat Albi 17-7 in Pool Five.
As part of the build-up to next month's Cardiff 2014 Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup finals weekend, ERC has joined forces with the WRU, Cardiff Blues and adidas to develop an annual grassroots community rugby programme targeting young players.
The Ulster Rugby full back, Jared Payne (No 15), has been suspended for two (2) weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in Dublin arising from the Heineken Cup quarter-final match against Saracens at Ravenhill Stadium on Saturday, 5 April.