Justin Wilson was also caught up in the lap 25 melee, and was the only retirement because of it, joining EJ Viso on the sidelines early on. Conway and Mario Moraes were the only other listed retirees, despite Ed Carpenter also finding the tyre wall during the race.
Behind Andretti, meanwhile, Castroneves finished his return in seventh spot, showing few signs of rust in his performance, even if some of his muscles weren't quite back in racing shape. The Brazilian also got caught by one of the yellows, which dropped him out of a potential top five finish.
"It was rough in the beginning because I didn't want to touch anybody - I saw that the nose of my car had some scratches, but that's what happens when you haven't been in the car for a while," he admitted, "It takes a little time for you to judge the distance [between cars]. I only had an hour-and-a-half [in practice and qualifying] and most of it was by myself. When you run behind someone, the car changes a lot but, finally, I got a rhythm and was able to get going. It's just good to sound like a driver again!"