Burton boss Paul Peschisolido was disappointed to have let a two-goal lead slip against Torquay at Plainmoor.
Justin Richards marked his Brewers debut with a double against last year's beaten play-off finalists. But Gulls boss Martin Ling, who replaced the departing Paul Buckle following the club's Old Trafford defeat to Stevenage in May, watched his side hit back to claim a point through Rene Howe and Lee Mansell.
Burton defender Tom Parkes was then sent off for a second bookable offence on what was a hectic opening-day afternoon in Devon.
Peschisolido told BBC Radio Derby: "I'm disappointed having been 2-0 up, but would we have taken a draw before the game? Probably, but it just leaves a bit of a bitter taste in your mouth to let it slip.
"But there are lots of positives to take out of it. We've brought a lot of new players into the squad. I thought we created numerous chances; we created numerous better chances than they did and overall, if we'd put them away, we could have been done and dusted, but it wasn't that way.
"I think we sat back a little too much and gave them a bit too much respect. If you give good players time and space on the ball they're going to punish you, but we've learnt our lesson from it and there's plenty of positives to take out of it."