A few months ago Simon from La Gazzetta Della Bici sent me these Verde pre ride and Rosso post ride massage oils through a friend at Condor. The picture above was taken just after I had first started using the Verde (notice the dull label from oily hands in comparison to the glossy Rosso). I have now been using the oils pretty religiously for about a month, saving them for some hard pre season camps and races in order to give them the proper testing they deserve.
Starting with the Verde, a more subtle warm up oil in comparison with some of the hell hot pre ride embrocations on offer. Pre and post ride massages are a real necessity for any serious amateur cyclist in my opinion, they are easily done and not overly time consuming. They are also relatively cheap with oils like these lasting me months in comparison to the expensive recovery drinks and compression tights on offer. I find it strange that massages aren't as widely used. Particularly the post ride massage, most amateur cyclists gizmos and wife's tales trickle down from the pros and they are massaged after every race so why don't we?
Whenever I have raced in Flanders, the sight of almost every other rider in the back of a team van having super glossy oil rubbed into their legs has become almost synonymous with racing out there. The smell of the embro is possibly as much a warm up for the nostrils as the legs, however a good massage is better than anything pre race, again its a wonder you dont see it more often in the Uk.
Back to the oils and the Verde oil, named Pesto by the lads on Talent Team for no apparent reason other than the possibility of Northerners never actually having smelt real pesto, was a key part too my warm up on my last camp in particular. On the track, with the legs spinning at up too 140 revolutions per minute or higher its very easy to get a small notch or complaint in the legs. The Verde and Rosso where a great help in massaging out these pains, I never felt like I was running out of oil, not having to use to great an amount for each massage unlike some other brands. I liked the subtle glint the Verde gave the legs, not too over the top like some of the Belgians like it!
'Calm is the virtue of the strong'. Both oils have a great smell that along with the physical benefits creates a really strong all round product. The smell of the Rosso in particular helps with the post race routine, spreading a sense of calm that is vital. Something I learnt whilst racing the 5 days of West Flanders last year was the need for complete rest and recuperation after every stage. Any good result will leave you feeling euphoric for hours, however its important to wind down and chill out before the next days exertions. In addition any poor result will leave you wanting to get racing off your mind for a few hours break, there is plenty of time to analyse mistakes made but also a need to simply relax for a while. On my last camp for example I retired to bed for up too three hours a day, between the end of the ride and dinner, with team mates to chat too or telly to keep you company its important too get any rest and chill time you can.
Overall the oils are a great addition to any kit bag, finding time for these small things isnt always easy but the noticeable difference they can make will leave you with fresh legs too train or race harder day after day. Thankyou Simon for the chance to review and use these great oils. Grazie
This is the first of many (i hope) reviews on the blog, along with all my usual miscellaneous rubbish! It does depend on what kit I receive, however I will also be reviewing some products I have bought myself and been given in the last year. I find most reviews pretty unhelpful so hopefully this might just help a little!
P.s. Checkout Simons new Gazzetta Della Bici kit here, I think it looks really really cool, particularly the bib shorts in his previous post. Going to stand out really well and is very stylish! Great work all round Simon!