Body Talk with Matteo Guidicelli
FUNFARE - Ricky Lo (The Philippine Star) - June 27, 2008 - 12:00am

For Matteo Guidicelli, life is a race.

“I started racing when I was 11,” said Matteo who turned 18 last March 26 (Aries), and he has been winning awards since then, including from the 2002 Philippine Cadet 85 Class (champion); 2003 Asian Championships, ICA Jr. (first runner-up); 2004 Philippine Open Class and 2004 Philippine Rotax Max Jr. (champion in both); 2005 ICA Superkart Series Championship (first runner-up); and 2006 Philippine 125 Open (champion). Those are just very few of the races Matteo has competed in.

Of mixed parentage (his father, Gianluca Guidicelli, is Italian; and his mother, Glenna Fernan, is Filipino; former Chief Justice Marcelo Fernan was Matteo’s lolo, brother of his grandfather), Gianmatteo Vittorio Fernan Guidicelli was born in Cebu, one of three siblings. He has spent extended vacations in Italy where he also competed in races.

“I started racing in Cebu where I also finished primary school and started high school (at Cebu International School),” added Matteo who’s also racing his way to showbiz stardom (introduced in the ABS-CBN sport show Go Kada Go! and then in Kung Fu Kids; now cast in the ABS-CBN Roxanne Guinoo-topbilled soap Ligaw na Bulaklak). “I first tried it in Italy when I was there for a vacation. When I came home to Cebu, my titos called me, saying, ‘Matteo, we are building a go-cart track here.’ I told my father, ‘Can I try?’ He said yes. Soon, my dad bought a go-cart for me and that started me off on the tracks.”

Now enrolled at the Brentville International School (in Mamplasan, Laguna), Matteo has also appeared in commercials (for Zed, Penshoppe, Petron, Smart, Gift Gate Swatch, Pepsi and Animax). In school, he acted in musicals (playing the lead role in Pippin where he sang almost 10 songs “live” for three consecutive nights).

End of July, Matteo is leaving for Chicago where he will pursue a course in Musical Theater (minor in Film) at Columbia College.

“I got my flair for racing from my father’s side; they’re all into motocross,” volunteered Matteo. “My interest in acting started two years ago when I took up a four-week acting workshop at the New York Academy in L.A. When I came back, I decided to include a theater course in my curriculum at Brent where I began acting in plays.”

Matteo stands 5’9", weighs 160 lbs., wears medium-sized shirt and size-9.5 shoes, has brown hair and brown eyes. He’s managed by Joji Dingcong.

Is taking care of a racer’s body any different from taking care of an ordinary guy’s body?

“I jog all the time. I have to practise every day on the racetrack. It’s like you’re getting punched every day when you’re racing. Your ribs get bruised up...your ribs are all black and blue after a race. You also have to exercise your neck. At home, I have a bicycle helmet on which I hang weights and I exercise with it. You have to exercise your forearms and your shoulders, but not so much your legs which you don’t use so much in racing. That’s why maliit ang legs ko. Super!”

And you have to be mentally alert, right?

“You have to be. When there’s a race the next day, you shouldn’t sleep late. You must have a good meal and you don’t think about anything but the race. You have to concentrate on the race.”

So how much sleep do you get per night?

“When there’s a race, as much as nine to 10 hours. Otherwise, only about six to seven hours.”

What kind of diet do you have?

“Basically, I eat normally. I eat rice only when I have to race. Otherwise, not so much or none at all. I eat lots of vegetables. My favorite food? Lechon!”

How much water do you take per day?

“A lot! When I eat out with friends, they have a pitcher of water ready for me. Ask Tita Virgie (Ramos Gift Gate and Swatch) and Tito Joji. I drink juice(s) but not so much. Soda? Only when I’m at a party.”

Do you take hard drinks?

“Only during special occasions.”

Do you smoke?

“No, I don’t.”

What vitamins do you take?

“I take 1,000 mgs. of vitamin C.”

Like most athletes, do you sweat a lot?

“Yes, I do. After a race, naliligo ako sa pawis.”

Is it bad to take a bath immediately after a race (or exercising)?

“Yes, it’s bad. You have to rest for at least 30 minutes before taking a bath.”

Aside from racing, what other sports do you dabble in?

“Soccer, swimming, horseback-riding, basketball and boxing.”

What part of your body do you think needs improvement?

“Only my legs. Too skinny.”

What part is most vulnerable?

“My head. If I sleep late, I get a headache.”

And what part of your body is your favorite?

“My hands. They are smooth. I use moisturizer a lot because I have dry skin.”

What part of a girl’s body do you notice first?

“Her face.”

What other qualities do you like in a girl?

“She must be down-to-earth and must have a positive attitude.”

And what turns you off?

“If she’s super-loud and super-wild.”

How’s your love life?

“I have no girlfriend now. I used to have one.”


“When there’s no race, I go out with friends on weekends.”

Sex life?

“Wala, wala, wala!”

What’s your favorite sleep wear?

“Basketball shorts and T-shirt.”

Never in the nude?

“Never! I sleep with eight pillows. I love cuddling pillows.”

Do you snore?

“I sleep alone...I don’t think I snore.”

Do you sleepwalk?

“I used to, two years ago. I would get up from bed, go to my parents’ room, open the door and then naguusap-usap kami. All the while, I was asleep, huh!”

Do you talk in your sleep?

“Yes, I do.”

What was the most beautiful dream that you ever had?

“I have two. One was when I dreamed that I won the Formula One. And two, when I dreamed that I was walking on the red carpet.”

Any bad dream?

“Lots of them, especially after I watch horror movies.”

What’s your favorite fantasy?

“Being stranded on an island with Jessica Alba.”

How do you cope with stress?

“I get a massage, almost every night. I listen to music because I also love to sing. I love old songs, ballads like those by Michael Bublé. I also like Ne-Yo. I enjoy watching movies, too. My current favorite is Pursuit of Happyness (starring Will Smith).”

Name three women you think have nice bodies.

“Jessica Alba (especially in Into The Blue). Michelle Rodriguez. Angel Locsin.”

And three men...

(Asking his mom who was seated beside him during the interview) “Brad Pitt. Tom Cruise. Richard Gere.”

Using only body language, how would you make a woman know that you admire her?

“I just look at her eyes. If she looks back and smiles, I approach her. What happens next? Bahala na. Hahahaha!”

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