At the start – which is held on the long straight down to Turn 4 – polesitter Will Power immediately broke away and Team Penske-Chevrolet teammate Josef Newgarden was able to dive inside Ryan Hunter-Reay at Turn 4, costing the Andretti Autosport-Honda driver momentum and leaving him exposed to an attack by Conor Daly’s Ed Carpenter Racing-Chevy, which the ECR driver duly took.
Behind, Alexander Rossi, in the highest placed of the cars starting on black tires managed to hold onto fifth, ahead of Felix Rosenqvist, Jack Harvey, Graham Rahal, Marco Andretti and VeeKay.
Next time by into Turn 2, Simon Pagenaud got halfway through an attempted pass on Rinus VeeKay in the other ECR car and spun to the back of the field.
On Lap 4, Hunter-Reay re-passed Daly for fourth but was now 4sec behind lead Power who had also pulled out a 2.7sec gap on Newgarden.
On Lap 6, Santino Ferrucci succeeded in sending his Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan-Honda up the inside of VeeKay at Turn 4 to claim 10th place. The Dutch rookie would swiftly then lose out to both Colton Herta and Scott Dixon, now running 10th having started 17th. Herta would maintain his momentum and grab ninth from teammate Andretti at Turn 2 on Lap 8 – and VeeKay would come storming back to nip past championship leader Dixon – only to…