“It will be wonderful to experience the Roma 2024 European Athletics Championships with the Olympic Stadium sold-out. I can’t wait to start the competition”. The Italian shot putter Leonardo Fabbri has no doubts.

“It will be a beautiful chance that I don’t know when it will happen again,” said the man who won the silver medal at the Budapest 2023 World Athletics Championships, “so we have to enjoy it and have fun. The Olympic Games are very important, but the European Athletics Championships at home has to be done well.”

The countdown to the competition, scheduled for June 7-12 at the Olympic Stadium and Foro Italico Park (tickets on sale here), has begun. “I really like to involve the public. I hope the stadium will be full because even if we will not be at 100 percent, we will definitely give something more. The whole Italian athletics would deserve it, because we have been doing very well lately,” added Fabbri, who has a special feeling with the Eternal City. “I attended the Golden Gala in Rome, enjoying the affection of the fans. Stands near platform were always sold out. The European Athletics Championships will be a dream,” said the 26-year-old, born in Bagno a Ripoli, just outside Florence.

Next June at the Olympic Stadium, in the shot put competition -“an explosive action that despite our imposing physiques makes us look like dancers”- the Italian shot putter will not be the only one participating. Also with him will be the other Italian Zane Weir. While waiting for Rome 2024, the two Italians will be involved in Friday’s final at the World Athletics Indoor Championships in Glasgow. “We have a beautiful relationship. We are friends in everyday life,” Fabbri says, “we stimulate each other and try to take something from each other every day. In Rome we can compete for the title or a double. It will be beautiful. I hope this relationship will lead us to one day be the Messi and Ronaldo of the shot put.”

With the European Athletics Championships over, the Italian will look to take revenge at the Olympics Games. “After missing the final by 10 centimeters in Tokyo, I told myself, ‘In Paris I don’t want anyone before me.’ I’m going to give it my all. I’ve been looking forward to getting back on an Olympic platform since that night in Japan.”