The former world champion and two-time overall World Cup winner showed no signs of the hamstring problems that have blighted his preparations for the season.
And the 40-year old believes he is right in the mix with the top 10, including quickest so far, Latvia's Martins Dukurs, closely bunched ahead of Friday's decisive third and fourth runs.
Earlier, all three British women sliders finished in the top 10 with Donna Creighton ranked third, Liz Yarnold eighth and 2006 Olympic bronze medallist Shelley Rudman ninth.
Elsewhere, Great Britain's Mica McNeill continues to underline her promise as one of women's bobsleigh's rising stars.
McNeill, who won Youth Olympic silver with Jazmin Sawyers earlier this year, secured two second place finishes in the opening America Cup races of the season, alongside Fran Slater and Amy Hill, who are sharing brakewoman duties.
- Sports & Recreation
- Martins Dukurs
- Donna Creighton