Roger Varian keeping Teona's options open
Roger Varian keeping Teona's options open

Teona was considered a serious Classic contender at the start of the year and she showed plenty of promise when finishing third to Aidan O'Brien's Snowfall in the Musidora Stakes at York in May. 

However, she came in a long way behind the same filly when placing tenth in the Oaks at Epsom the following month and at that stage it seemed she may not live up to her initial promise. 

Varian opted to hand the daughter of Sea The Stars a break following her disappointing showing at Epsom, and that seemingly proved a shrewd decision, as she marked her return by winning a Listed Race at Windsor last month. 

More success were to follow for Teona, as her victory in the Prix Vermeille last weekend came at the expense of previous foe Snowfall, and Varian is hopeful his filly has now turned the corner. 

"She got back last night and seems fine after the race, so we're very happy with that," the Bury Road handler confirmed. 

"We've made no secret of the high regard we hold her in. Hopefully she's a filly really going places now." 

Teona's success at ParisLongchamp has led to suggestions that she could return to France for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe on October 3, although she also holds alternative Group One entries at that meeting, as well as in the Qipco British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes at Ascot later in the month. 

Varian admits the Arc is an option for Teona, but he and owner Ali Saeed are in no rush to make a decision on the three-year-old's next port of call. 

"I haven't had a conversation with the owner yet, but you'd have to consider the Arc if we're happy with the filly over the next two and a half weeks and the ground looks like it will be fairly sound," Varian continued. 

"I think at the moment we keep everything on the table and don't make any decisions, because we don't have to. She's got these big-race entries, so we don't have to supplement her or anything like that, which means we can make these decisions late. 

"The nice thing for us now is that she's won the Vermeille and established herself as a top-drawer filly." 

Whatever happens between now and the end of the season, Varian is hoping Teona returns to racing next year, although he admits he is yet to have that conversation with her owner. 

"I haven't discussed that with the owner, but I certainly hope so," when asked if Teona will still be racing in 2022. 

"She's only just getting started. Her mother raced as a five-year-old, and there is no reason to think Teona won't get better with age."

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