Second half goals from Yoan Gouffran and Henri Saivet handed Bordeaux an impressive 2-0 win at a Rennes side who allowed Les Girondins to poach fourth place from them. Bordeaux, the champions in 2009, now trail third-placed Marseille by six points.
Lorient, hoping to trim a seven-point gap on Marseille, instead went down to a 2-0 loss to defending champions Montpellier, who have struggled this term and were thumped at Lille just before the winter break.
Montpellier coach Rene Girard pulled a rabbit out of the hat in sending on Gaetan Charbonnier for Emanuel Herrera on the hour and he promptly scored twice in the final 11 minutes as the hosts moved up to eighth, just three points behind Bordeaux.
Elsewhere, rock-bottom Nancy settled for a 2-2 home draw with Lille after Thomas Ayasse grabbed an 82nd-minute equaliser.
Nolan Roux scored in the opening minute for Lille but Romain Grange levelled on 21 minutes. Dimitri Payet put Lille ahead on the half hour but Ayasse ensured Nancy claimed a draw that leaves them seven points from safety. Lille now stand seventh, a point above Montpellier.