The 26-year-old from Cheltenham, who came through the European Ladies Tour qualifying school in January while still an amateur, is part of a five-way tie in Antalya.
Alongside Ellis are English compatriot Florentyna Parker, Swede Pernilla Lindberg, Dutch player Christel Boeljon and Italian Diana Luna.
One behind are Switzerland's Anais Maggetti, German Caroline Masson, France's Lucie Andre and Australian Stacey Keating.
Parker was runner-up to Scot Carly Booth in the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open last weekend.
Teenager Booth had a level-par 73, the same as Laura Davies and English amateur Charley Hull.
Ellis reeled off four birdies on the back nine and scrambled par on the 18th after losing her grip on the tee.
"I struggle with really sweaty hands - so much so I actually used a rain glove the whole way round," she said.
"I thought it was probably going to be a bogey, so I just laid up and holed it from 12 feet for a par."
Parker, the 2010 Dutch Open champion, came back from a double bogey on the 10th, her opening hole.
"I got it going on the front nine with four birdies and played really well," she said.
Lindberg, who is leading the Solheim Cup standings after six top 10 finishes since late September, said: "We know everyone is going to be in the trees at some point this week.
"I only made one bogey out there, so it was a good day."
Defending champion Boeljon said: "The course is fairly tight and I'm a pretty straight player off the tee, but today [Thursday] it could have been better."
Luna commented: "I hit many shots around the pin, but not many putts dropped."
Her one bogey on the 10th came as a result of three-putting.