We finally found the perfect day to really test the Gabba WS Jersey in ridiculous conditions. Andrew Reed was over from the States for our Castelli global creative conference and he really wanted to ride the Mortirolo. The forecast was for driving rain, but we couldn’t really let that stop us, could we?
Sure enough, the climb was tough but the fun came along when the skies just opened up on us about 2km from the top. Fortunately we had our Gabba jackets that use a new 4-way stretch Windstopper to provide stretchy breathable protection from wind and cold, but as a short sleeve cut that prevents heat build-up when riding hard.
When used with Castelli Nanoflex water-repellent arm warmers you have an incredible system to keep you warm and protected, yet light, fast and aero without over heating.
The descent of the Mortirolo is 13km on some extremely steep and tight roads, and to add to the fun there were a bunch of cars and even two busses to pass. It’s an amazingly tight descent that turned into possibly the most technical descent I’ve ever done considering the slippery roads, Zipp carbon wheels with ZeroGravity brakes (were astoundingly affective in the wet) and some mud washing over the road.
With only 9°C/48°F at the top and the driving rain I though it might be too much for the Gabba WS Jersey. My legs got a bit cold, but between the jacket and armwarmers along with Diluvio neoprene gloves and Nano waterproof shoecovers, I was set. I think the special Thor Hushovd world champ cycling cap was the secret piece that kept me adequately protected and turned what could have been a brutal fight to survive the descent into 13km of nonstop adrenaline.
Notice the difference between the dread at the top and look of having just ridden the most fun descent of my life at the bottom of the descent.
By the way, the Gabba got its name from it’s ideator, Garmin team rider Gabriel Rasch. The guy is a font of clothing ideas who is working tirelessly behind the scenes to help us make better clothing just like he works hard on the front of the peloton long before the TV cameras turn on.
Text and photos: Smitty and Reed.