THE man who set the outright lap record at last year's Challenge Bathurst, Christopher Mies, is once again showing plenty of pace at the 2019 edition.
Mies set a fastest lap of two minutes and 3.508 seconds during Thursday's opening GT Pirelli Supersprint driving an Audi R8 LMS Evo.
Times were down during the afternoon's second session, where several red flag periods prevented teams locking many laps.
Fresh off the end of his Supercars campaign, Shane van Gisbergen was the fastest during the disrupted session with a 2:03.8940 in his Mercedes AMG GT3.
Challenge Bathurst is an excellent opportunity for those teams taking part in next year's Bathurst 12 Hour to get in vital laps at Mount Panorama.
Mies said he's overall pleased with the handling of the car but knows there's room for improvement in the setup.
"The car was quite fast in the morning. We didn't change anything in the afternoon because it's close to the conditions we'd probably have for qualifying in the 12 hour," he said.
"The times were slower but we didn't put on any new tyres for the second session.
"The car was doing great, but there's a bit of a balance issue. We're a bit on the oversteer side, which we have to handle, but overall I'm happy.
"This morning the track was really dirty, probably because of the rain.
"We got oversteer when the track got warmer, which is normal for this place, so now we'll do some fine tuning with the dampers and springs to see if we can get that balance."
Mies set a time of 1:59.2910 during last year's unrestricted session of racing, and racegoers will be eager to see if he can match that effort on Friday.
However, given the number of red flags during Thursday's second session, Mies said the team may opt to keep themselves restricted to give themselves more race-worthy data.
"We still have a lot to test and because of the red flags in the second session we're running a bit behind our plan," he said.
"I'd wish to have another crack at the record but the testing for the 12 Hour has priority."
The first of the GT Pirelli Supersprint sessions will start from 7.50am with the unrestricted session to follow at 1.30pm.
Both sessions will run for an hour.