Felix Loch won the 40th Luge World Cup race of his career and his first since February 2019 despite not reaching perfection on the ice of Innsbruck.
The German held the lead at the halfway stage and didn't relinquish the advantage thereon, with his 1:39.941 total time seeing him win by more than a tenth of a second in the season opener.
A time of 50.056 seconds got Loch off to an ideal start in Austria but his work was far from done there, with nobody beating his 49.885s effort in the second run – despite admitting mistakes throughout.
Pavlichenko retains European crown while Loch's World Cup coronation arrives
Compatriot Johannes Ludwig finished in 1:40.067 to claim second spot, a finish he would have perhaps been disappointed with having registered the quickest time in the first three sectors on both runs.
Two solid runs saw Dominik Fischnaller take bronze while home favourite David Gleirscher – who had been second at the halfway point – had to settle for fourth after a slow second run.
British representation came in the shape of Rupert Staudinger, who finished more than two seconds adrift in 26th.
"In the first run I had a huge failure,” said three-time Olympic champion Loch. "So I thought: What is going on?
"You learn that you shouldn't go to curve eight too early when you come to Igls for the first time. But it was simply a lane problem.
"I thought that I would somehow be able to get into turn eight, which is why I didn't react very well when I got out of the traffic circle. But it just didn't work out."
The men's singles season continues with the sprints at the same venue on Sunday.
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