Vantage Goldfields (ASX:VGO) is continuing the underground drilling to potentially upgrade the JORC gold resources at its Barbrook Mines Complex in South Africa with early results showing good grades and widths.
The Barbrook Mines Complex, located in the prolific Barbeton Goldfield district, includes the first Taylors Mine- Barbrook Stage 1 that produces float concentrates from underground mine.
A Barbrook Stage 2 expansion, for which a bankable feasibility study is currently underway, will target about 70,000 ounces per annum of gold production.
Recent underground BFS diamond drilling results include 7.6 metres at 6 grams per tonne gold from 166 metres; 7.9 metres at 3.64g/t from 138 metres; 4.4 metres at 5.17g/t from 85 metres and 6 metres at 4.47g/t from 189 metres, among others.
These results that show better than expected grades and widths, provide further confirmation of the continuity of mineralisation below the current workings at the Barbrook Mines complex.
The Barbeton Goldfield district, the second largest goldfield in South Africa, has a long history of gold production and is the location of several operating gold mines containing multi-million ounce gold deposits, including the Lily Mine.
The mine was acquired and developed by Vantage in 1997 and has already produced more than 100,000 ounces of gold.
The Company has three advanced projects and total estimated Mineral Resources of 4.5 million ounces, including estimated Ore Reserves of 0.5 million ounces.
The BFS diamond drilling is designed to upgrade existing JORC Mineral Resources in the Taylors ore body below the adit on 10 level, with drilling targeting depth extensions in an area where no previous mining has been done.
Three underground diamond drill rigs have been used in this program and as of end of May, a total of 5,837 metres had been drilled from a planned 8,000 metres program. However, going forward one rig will be utilised for the BFS drilling.
The drilling into existing Indicated and Inferred Resources to a vertical depth of 200 metres below 10 Level is to provide greater confidence in the ore body modelling in order to support the envisaged mine plan for the Barbrook Stage 2 Expansion.
The positive tenor of underground diamond drilling that showed better gold grades and widths reaffirms the gold potential at the Barbrook Mines complex and could result in additional resources being added.
With the recent capital raising of $2 million via a placement also puts the company on the path to potentially expanding gold production at the Lily and Taylors mine, where combined operations are likely to produce 30,000 ounces this year and expanding to 45,000 ounces next year.
During the three years since debuting on the ASX, Vantage has registered a four fold increase in production, revenue has gone up five times and gross profit increased to A$12.1 million last year.
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