VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Dec. 15, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Newcore Gold Ltd. (“Newcore” or the “Company”) (TSX-V: NCAU, OTCQX: NCAUF) is pleased to provide an update on work programs and exploration activities underway at the Company’s 100% owned Enchi Gold Project (“Enchi” or the “Project”) in Ghana. Current activities focused on de-risking and advancement of the Project include:
- Completion of an updated Mineral Resource Estimate to be released in January 2023;
- Diamond drilling underway at the Nyam Gold Deposit at Enchi, following up on high-grade results from prior drilling of the upper sulphide mineralization;
- Trenching on several kilometre-scale gold anomalies to continue to advance early-stage targets across the Project towards the drill testing stage;
- Continued metallurgical testwork, including testing of sulphide mineralization;
- Completion of an updated environmental and social baseline study in H1 2023.
Highlights from Work Programs and Exploration Underway at Enchi
- Mineral Resource Update Underway with Completion in January 2023, incorporating results from a portion of the 90,000 metre drill program completed in mid-2022. From this drilling approximately 20,000 metres was included in the 2021 Mineral Resource Estimate; approximately 40,000 metres was focused on resource expansion and is anticipated to be included in the update; the remaining metres focused on earlier stage targets that highlight the future resource growth potential at Enchi and will be incorporated into future mineral resource updates. Completion of an updated Mineral Resource Estimate is scheduled for January 2023 as the Company’s resource consultant completes incorporation of all new drilling data and recently completed drone topographic surveys. It is anticipated that incorporating the recently completed drone survey will upgrade a portion of the Mineral Resource Estimate into the Indicated category, further de-risking the Project.
- Newcore is funded to complete the current work program at Enchi (commenced October 2022) with $5 million in cash and short-term investments at the end of Q3 2022.
- Drilling Underway Targeting High-Grade Potential at Enchi. Diamond drilling underway at the Nyam Gold Deposit is following-up on high-grade mineralization identified in the upper portions of the sulphide mineralization, continuing to define the potential for high-grade underground mineralization at Enchi. Results anticipated Q1 2023.
- Trenching Intersected Mineralization at Early-Stage Targets, providing additional drill targets for discovery. First pass trenching of kilometre-scale gold-in-soil anomalies encountered strong results in oxidized mineralization with 0.73 grams per tonne gold (“g/t Au”) over 22.0 metres (“m”) at the Nkwanta Target and 0.65 g/t Au over 24.0 m at the Agyeikrom Target.
- Metallurgical Testwork and Updated Baseline Environmental and Social Study underway as part of broader activities at Enchi designed to continue to advance and de-risk the Project.
Luke Alexander, President and CEO of Newcore stated, “We continue to be active on numerous fronts advancing and de-risking the Enchi Gold Project. An updated Mineral Resource Estimate, incorporating the significant amount of drilling completed in 2021 and 2022, is targeted for completion in January 2023. We are also thrilled to be back drilling at Enchi with the first phase of this drill program targeting the higher-grade potential of the sulphide mineralization that we first encountered in 2021. Testing the high-grade and depth potential of the sulphide mineralization is a priority as part of defining the potential for gold mineralization at Enchi on the same scale and magnitude as the significant gold deposits along the Sefwi-Bibiani gold belt.”
Greg Smith, VP Exploration of Newcore stated, “The extensive trenching program completed in 2021 and 2022 has defined multiple gold mineralized structures in a series of kilometre-scale gold-in-soil anomalies. This sets the stage for future first pass drilling on additional early stage targets at Enchi with an objective of proving out the potential for additional new discoveries across the Project. Simultaneously additional work underway, consisting of further metallurgical testing, a baseline environmental study and a drone topographic survey, are important steps in continuing to de-risk and advance the Project for future economic studies.”
Mineral Resource Update to be Completed January 2023
An updated Mineral Resource Estimate is underway, incorporating results from the 90,000 metre drill program completed in mid-2022. Of the 92,583 metres of drilling completed in 2021 and 2022, the current Mineral Resource Estimate (completed June 2021) incorporated only 20,195 metres of drilling. Of the remaining 72,388 metres the Company anticipates that approximately 40,000 metres will be additive to the resource at Enchi given those metres focused on testing existing deposit areas along strike and at depth. The remaining metres targeted earlier stage targets highlighting the potential for future resource growth at Enchi as Newcore continues to prove out the multi-million-ounce potential of the 216 km2 district scale property. Completion of the updated Mineral Resource Estimate is scheduled for January 2023 as the Company’s consultant completes incorporation of all new drilling data and recently completed drone topographic surveys. It is anticipated that incorporating the recently completed drone survey will upgrade a portion of the Mineral Resource Estimate into the Indicated category, further de-risking the Project.
Diamond Drilling Targeting High-Grade Sulphide Mineralization
Diamond drilling is underway testing the Nyam Gold Deposit at Enchi, following-up on high-grade intercepts intersected in the upper portions of the sulphide mineralization. A series of holes are planned to test the down dip and lateral extensions to the high-grade gold mineralization. To date, the deposit has only been tested to a maximum vertical depth of 300 metres and remains open to depth.
Table 1 – Enchi Gold Project High Grade Drill Highlights
|Hole ID||Zone/Deposit||From (m)||To (m)||Length (m)||Au (g/t)|
1. See detailed table for complete results
2. Intervals reported are hole lengths with true width estimated to be 75 – 85%
3. Length-weighted averages from uncut assays
Long section showing deeper drill results at Nyam
This is the first priority area to be drilled as part of the planned 5,000 metres of drilling announced September 8, 2022 which will include both diamond and Reverse Circulation (“RC”) drilling. Diamond drilling will focus on continuing to define the higher-grade sulphide mineralization at depth with a goal of delineating the potential for high-grade underground resources at Enchi. RC drilling will target near-surface oxide and shallow sulphide mineralization with a goal of outlining additional resource growth along strike and depth at all deposit areas as well as at new discoveries made as part of the 90,000 metre drill program completed mid-2022.
Trenching on Several Kilometre-Scale Gold-in-Soil Anomalies
Exploration work at Enchi includes trenching to continue to define the near-surface, multi-million-ounce potential of the Project. Trenching completed in 2021 and 2022 focused on a number of high-priority gold targets that are defined by kilometre-scale gold-in-soil anomalies located across the 216 km2 Project. Trenching intersected high-priority gold mineralization with similar grades and widths to prior trench results associated with the current resource zones. Since 2021, Newcore has completed 62 trenches total 11,037 metres with a total of 49 trenches encountering gold bearing structures of which 37 encountered multiple gold mineralized zones. This exploration work continues to define additional drill targets which will be prioritized for further exploration work.
Table 2 – Enchi Gold Project Trenching Results Highlights
|Hole ID||Zone||From (m)||To (m)||Length (m)||Au (g/t)|
1. See detailed table for complete results
2. Intervals reported are trench lengths with true width estimated to be 75 – 85%
3. Length-weighted averages from uncut assays
Complete list of the results from trenching completed in 2021 and 2022
A plan map with highlights from trenching completed in 2021 and 2022 can be viewed by clicking here.
A property map showing the location of deposits and targets at Enchi can be viewed by clicking here.
The exploration work includes first pass trenching on the Agyeikrom Target which is located in the north-central portion of the Enchi Gold Project. The gold-in-soil anomaly at Agyeikrom extends 4.5 kms by 2.0 kms with no previous trenching or drilling completed. A total of eight trenches (1,852 m) tested 1.2 kms of strike length with results including 0.65 g/t Au over 24.0 m and a second interval of 0.20 g/t Au over 4.3 m, 0.36 g/t Au over 28.0 m and a second interval of 0.57 g/t Au over 4.0 m, 0.51 g/t Au over 10.0 m, and 0.48 g/t Au over 4.0 m.
At the Nkwanta Target trenching has defined a series of gold mineralized structures within one of the strongest gold-in-soil anomalies on the Project which stretches for 2.5 kms by 1.5 kms. A total of 30 trenches (5,610 m) tested multiple structures with results including 0.73 g/t Au over 22.0 m including 2.45 g/t Au over 6.0 m, 0.14 g/t Au over 56.0 m, 0.37 g/t Au over 18.0 m, 0.58 g/t Au over 10.0 m, 0.61 g/t Au over 8.0 m, and 0.78 g/t Au over 6.0 m.
At the Kojina Hill Target trenching consisted of 15 trenches (2,168 m) with step-out trenching of the previously drilled area extending the defined gold mineralization more than 500 metres north and south of the prior drilling. Trench KJTR008B, located 300 metres to the south of previous work intersected eight gold mineralized structures highlighted by 4.59 g/t Au over 6.0 m. Trench KJCH004, located 100 metres to the east on a subparallel structure intersected 2.01 g/t Au over 9.0 m. Trench KJTR001, located 500 metres to the south of previous work and on the southern limited of the currently tested area, intersected multiple gold mineralized structures with results including 0.58 g/t Au over 30.0 m, 0.40 g/t Au over 12.0 m, and 0.28 g/t Au over 12.0 m. Additional trenches intercepted 0.71 g/t Au over 18.0 m, 0.24 g/t Au over 42.0 m, 0.26 g/t Au over 24.0 m, and 1.04 g/t Au over 4.0 m.
Trenching work on the southern extension of the Kwakyekrom Gold Deposit has extended the defined gold mineralization in preparation of additional drilling to be completed in 2023. The trenching consisted of a total of nine trenches (1,407 m) with results including 1.90 g/t Au over 8.0 m, 0.25 g/t Au over 44.0 m, 0.25 g/t Au over 12.0 m, 0.23 g/t Au over 6.0 m, and 0.22 g/t Au over 6.0 m.
Health, safety, and the environment are prioritized throughout the trenching process and all trenches are backfilled and reclaimed once sampling and mapping are completed.
The Company continues to de-risk the Project through metallurgical testwork designed to optimize and improve the understanding of processing options available for Enchi.
Diamond drill core samples were collected and delivered to the laboratory at the University of Technology and Mining located in Tarkwa, Ghana. The metallurgical work underway is comprised of optimization column tests following-up on recent positive recoveries from a series of column tests on oxide and transitional material from the Sewum and Boin Deposits completed at Intertek laboratories. The recent tests continued to have excellent recoveries with an average gold recovery of 92.4% and showed low reagent consumptions (see news release dated October 12, 2022). The optimization tests will focus on further defining the optimal reagent level with a goal to lower potential processing costs while maintaining high recoveries.
In addition to the column testwork, a bench-scale, bulk, sample metallurgical test work program will be completed. The program will process 20 tonnes of representative mineralized material using the optimized reagent levels as determined by the results of the on-going column tests.
Sample selection is also under way for metallurgical testing of sulphide mineralization which will be initiated in 2022 and completed in 2023.
Baseline Environmental and Social Study
The Company has contracted a qualified independent engineering firm to complete an updated Baseline Environmental and Social Study building on the work completed previously in 2015. The study includes compilation of social baseline data, collection of physical environmental baseline data, engagement with relevant stakeholders, and gathering of relevant supplementary data, as well as recommendations for next steps. Specific field work will include surface water quality and use, ground water quality testing, climate, air quality and noise, geology, soil sampling and analysis, terrestrial ecological survey including flora and fauna, and aquatic biology/biodiversity assessment. The socio-economic baseline survey will include interviews with key informants, focus group discussions, general surveys, and stakeholder engagement and consultations. This is an important step in further advancing and de-risking the Enchi Gold Project towards a future production decision.
Enchi Gold Project Mineral Resource Estimate
The Enchi Gold Project hosts a pit constrained Inferred Mineral Resource of 70.4 million tonnes grading 0.62 g/t Au containing 1.41 million ounces gold (see Newcore news release dated June 8, 2021). Mineral resource estimation practices are in accordance with CIM Estimation of Mineral Resource and Mineral Reserve Best Practice Guidelines (November 29, 2019) and follow CIM Definition Standards for Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves (May 10, 2014), that are incorporated by reference into National Instrument 43-101 (“NI 43-101”). The Mineral Resource Estimate was prepared by independent qualified person Todd McCracken, P. Geo. of BBA E&C Inc. The technical report, titled “Preliminary Economic Assessment for the Enchi Gold Project, Enchi, Ghana” has an effective date of June 8, 2021, and is available under the Company’s profile on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
Enchi Drill Program
A 5,000 metre discovery and resource expansion drill program, following up on the success achieved to date from drilling at Enchi, commenced in Q4 2022. Diamond drilling will focus on continuing to define the higher-grade sulphide mineralization at depth with a goal of delineating the potential for high-grade underground resources at Enchi. RC drilling will target near-surface oxide and shallow sulphide mineralization with a goal of outlining additional resource growth along strike and depth at all deposit areas. RC drilling will also be planned to follow-up on discoveries made as part of the recently completed 90,000 metre drill program. Additional exploration work is also on-going, including metallurgical testwork and trenching of high-priority surface anomalies.
A 90,000 metre discovery and resource expansion drill program (commenced in August 2020) was completed at Enchi in Q2 2022. The program included both RC and diamond drilling and included the first deeper drilling on the Project. Newcore’s multi-pronged exploration approach delivered on the goals set out at the start of drilling: (i) successfully outlined potential resource growth along strike at all four existing deposits (Sewum, Boin, Nyam, Kwakyekrom); (ii) encountered strong results at previously drilled zones that are outside of the resource area (Kojina Hill and Eradi); (iii) drilling intersected high-grade at depth which has outlined the potential for underground resources; and (iv) identified new discoveries from successful first pass drilling on early stage kilometre-scale gold-in-soil anomalous targets (Sewum South, Tokosea). The total planned drill program consisted of 575 holes representing 92,583 metres.
Table 3 – Enchi Gold Project Trench Location Details
|Hole ID||Target||UTM East||UTM North||Elevation||Length (m)|
Newcore Gold Best Practice
Newcore is committed to best practice standards for all exploration, sampling and drilling activities. Drilling was completed by an independent drilling firm using industry standard RC and Diamond Drill equipment. Analytical quality assurance and quality control procedures include the systematic insertion of blanks, standards and duplicates into the sample strings. Samples are placed in sealed bags and shipped directly to Intertek Labs located in Tarkwa, Ghana for 50 gram gold fire assay.
Mr. Gregory Smith, P. Geo, Vice President of Exploration at Newcore, is a Qualified Person as defined by NI 43-101, and has reviewed and approved the technical data and information contained in this news release. Mr. Smith has verified the technical and scientific data disclosed herein and has conducted appropriate verification on the underlying data including confirmation of the drillhole data files against the original drillhole logs and assay certificates.
About Newcore Gold Ltd.
Newcore Gold is advancing its Enchi Gold Project located in Ghana, Africa’s largest gold producer (1). The Project currently hosts an Inferred Mineral Resource of 1.41 million ounces of gold at 0.62 g/t (2). Newcore Gold offers investors a unique combination of top-tier leadership, who are aligned with shareholders through their 24% equity ownership, and prime district scale exploration opportunities. Enchi’s 216 km2 land package covers 40 kilometres of Ghana’s prolific Bibiani Shear Zone, a gold belt which hosts several 5 million-ounce gold deposits, including the Chirano mine 50 kilometers to the north. Newcore’s vision is to build a responsive, creative and powerful gold enterprise that maximizes returns for shareholders.
On Behalf of the Board of Directors of Newcore Gold Ltd.
President, CEO & Director
For further information, please contact:
Mal Karwowska | Vice President, Corporate Development and Investor Relations
+1 604 484 4399
(1) Source: Production volumes for 2021 as sourced from the World Gold Council
(2) Notes for Inferred Mineral Resource Estimate:
1. CIM definition standards were followed for the resource estimate.
2. The 2021 resource models used ordinary kriging (OK) grade estimation within a three-dimensional block model with mineralized zones defined by wireframed solids and constrained by pits shell for Sewum, Boin and Nyam. Kwakyekrom used Inverse Distance squared (ID2).
3. A base cut-off grade of 0.2 g/t Au was used with a capping of gold grades varied by deposit and zone.
4. A US$1,650/ounce gold price, open pit with heap leach operation was used to determine the cut-off grade of 0.2 g/t Au. Mining costs of US$1.40 for oxides, US$2.10 for transition, and US$2.60 for fresh rock per mined tonne and G&A and milling costs of US$6.83/milled tonne. The Inferred Mineral Resource Estimate is pit constrained.
5. Metallurgical recoveries have been applied to four individual deposits and in each case three material types (oxide, transition, and fresh rock) with average recoveries of 77% for Sewum, 79% for Boin, 60% for Nyam and 72% for Kwakyekrom.
6. A density of 2.20 g/cm3 for oxide, 2.45 g/cm3 for transition, and 2.70 g/cm3 for fresh rock was applied.
7. Optimization pit slope angles varied based on the rock types.
8. Mineral Resources that are not mineral reserves do not have economic viability. Numbers may not add due to rounding.
9. These numbers are from the technical report titled “Preliminary Economic Assessment for the Enchi Gold Project, Enchi, Ghana”, with an effective date of June 8, 2021, prepared for Newcore Gold by BBA E&C Inc. in accordance with National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects and is available under Newcore’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com.
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This news release includes statements that contain “forward-looking information” within the meaning of the applicable Canadian securities legislation (“forward-looking statements”). All statements, other than statements of historical fact, are forward-looking statements and are based on expectations, estimates and projections as at the date of this news release. Any statement that involves discussion with respect to predictions, expectations, beliefs, plans, projections, objectives, assumptions, future events or performance (often, but not always using phrases such as “plans”, “expects”, “is expected”, “budget”, “scheduled”, “estimates”, “forecasts”, “intends”, “anticipates”, or “believes” or variations (including negative variations) of such words and phrases, or state that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would”, “might” or “will” be taken, occur or be achieved) are not statements of historical fact and may be forward-looking statements. In this news release, forward-looking statements relate, among other things, to: statements about the estimation of mineral resources; results of our drill campaign, results of our exploration work including trench results, results of metallurgical testwork, magnitude or quality of mineral deposits; anticipated advancement of mineral properties or programs; and future exploration prospects.
These forward-looking statements, and any assumptions upon which they are based, are made in good faith and reflect our current judgment regarding the direction of our business. The assumptions underlying the forward-looking statements are based on information currently available to Newcore. Although the forward-looking statements contained in this news release are based upon what management of Newcore believes, or believed at the time, to be reasonable assumptions, Newcore cannot assure its shareholders that actual results will be consistent with such forward-looking statements, as there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. Forward-looking information also involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking information. Such factors include, among others: risks related to the speculative nature of the Company’s business; the Company’s formative stage of development; the Company’s financial position; possible variations in mineralization, grade or recovery rates; actual results of current exploration activities; fluctuations in general macroeconomic conditions; fluctuations in securities markets; fluctuations in spot and forward prices of gold and other commodities; fluctuations in currency markets (such as the Canadian dollar to United States dollar exchange rate); change in national and local government, legislation, taxation, controls, regulations and political or economic developments; risks and hazards associated with the business of mineral exploration, development and mining (including environmental hazards, unusual or unexpected geological formations); the presence of laws and regulations that may impose restrictions on mining; employee relations; relationships with and claims by local communities; the speculative nature of mineral exploration and development (including the risks of obtaining necessary licenses, permits and approvals from government authorities); and title to properties.
Forward-looking statements contained herein are made as of the date of this news release and the Company disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or results, except as may be required by applicable securities laws. There can be no assurance that forward-looking information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information.