Munich - Martin Kaymer delighted the home fans with a bogey free 67 that left him just one shot off the lead before play was suspended on Day 1 of the BMW International Open.
According to the European Tour website, an elite field had gathered at Golfclub München Eichenried and two time Major champion Kaymer took big crowds with him as he moved to five under, just one shot behind Andrea Pavan.
Play was suspended due to the threat of lightning at 16:21 and heavy rain followed, with two hours and 54 minutes lost before the players returned to resume play.
Darkness eventually brought an end to proceedings at 21:08, with nobody able to get past Pavan and 33 players yet to complete their first rounds.
Pavan had a career best season in 2018, claiming a breakthrough European Tour win at the D+D Real Czech Masters and finishing 34th on the Race to Dubai Rankings.
He has yet to register a top 10 in 2019 but an opening 66 in Munich represented his best round of the season so far.
Kaymer has four Ryder Cups on his CV and he was joined at five under by 2008 Ryder Cup player Oliver Wilson.
England's Lee Westwood - a 10 time Ryder Cup player - and Dane Jeff Winther were at four under, a shot clear of a group containing defending champion and world No 24 Matt Wallace.
Kaymer's last European Tour victory came at the 2014 US Open Championship but the German is beginning to show signs of the form that made him a Race to Dubai champion and world No 1.
Race to Dubai leader Wallace had four birdies and a bogey in his round to sit at three under in a group of 14 players that also included European Tour winners Gaganjeet Bhullar, Robert Karlsson, Richard McEvoy, Haydn Porteous, Alvaro Quiros, Andy Sullivan and Romain Wattel.
Swedish pair Joakim Lagergren and Alex Noren were at three under with holes left to play on Friday morning.