Auckland Cup winner Ladies First will be on a Group One path at Otaki later this month as she builds towards a Sydney campaign.

The six-year-old thrilled trainer Allan Sharrock with her first-up solid-finishing sixth behind Flamingo in last week’s Listed Wairarapa Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes at Tauherenikau. Her next start will be the Gr. 1 Haunui Farm WFA Classic at Otaki on February 23.

“She went massive first-up and she looks outstanding,’’ Sharrock said. ‘’The Otaki race will still be too short for her, but she might run a nice fifth or sixth. She needs it to get ready for the Sydney Cup.

‘’After that she will possibly go to Ellerslie for the Bonecrusher, and if she gets a shower of rain there she could run a place. She won’t be peaking until she gets to Sydney.’’

After the Gr. 1 Bonecrusher New Zealand Stakes at Ellerslie on March 9, Ladies First will use the Gr. 2 Chairman’s Quality at Randwick on April 6 as a final lead-up to the Gr. 1 Sydney Cup on the same course a week later.