Rob W wrote:Vettel was in front of Alonso and pulling away for a large chunk of the race.
After pit stops, Alonso was around 3.6 sec back from Vettel. This gap slowly came down by a few tenths per lap until Alonso caught Vettel (recall him moving out of Vettel's wake to keep his car cool). So the Ferrari was in fact faster after pitting.
Rob W wrote:Maybe the graph would show relative pace more accurately if it ignored laps where drivers encounter significant traffic (lap 27 for example) or other hindrances.
If the idea is to get an idea of the race pace then only 'free' laps should be considered. Anything else just skews the curve.
This is true. The lines will become more accurate as outliers are removed. I looked at lap 27 for Vettel and it does look as though he was slowed by a few tenths by lapped traffic. But take a look at the variation in lap times and it is obvious drivers are not consistently making 'perfect' laps anyways. So you can either high grade data and end up with a small and potentially biased dataset or just look at the general trends that are coming out.