Ahead of an updated resource estimate and prefeasibility study due out in the second half of the year for its namesake project in north-central Quebec, Troilus Gold (TSX: TLG) has released drill results from the Southwest zone. These latest assays expand mineralization out along strike, down dip and within the pit shell defined in a September 2020 preliminary economic assessment.
The drill results suggest a 25% increase to the strike of the Main portion of the Southwest zone, expanding it to over 1 km from 825 metres previously. The West area within the Southwest zone has been extended by 100 metres. In addition, Troilus has traced a potential new zone of gold mineralization, southeast of the Main portion, with ‘above average gold bearing intervals’ that would bring up the width of the Southwest zone to over 650 metres.
At depth, Troilus has hit gold zones as deep as 500 metres below the PEA pit shell; additional drilling with the conceptual shell has confirmed extensions of higher-grade mineralization in a previously undrilled area.
Drill highlights included 9 metres of 3.65 grams gold-equivalent per tonne; 9 metres of 1.62 grams gold-equivalent per tonne; and 15 metres of 1.18 grams gold-equivalent per tonne. All of these intervals included higher-grade sub-sections, such as 6 metres of 5.32 grams gold-equivalent and 1 metre of 5.87 grams gold-equivalent.
““We are very excited by these latest results obtained from the north east extent of the Southwest zone, which advance further into the 2.5-km gap between the Southwest zone and Z87,” Justin Reid, Troilus Gold’s CEO, said in a news release.” Results to date demonstrate a strong continuity of mineralization from the Southwest Zone towards Z87 and J zone. As we continue stepping out to the northeast, closing the gap towards Z87, we are observing gold mineralization over large widths and at higher grades than the original Southwest mineral resource estimate, that remain open in all directions.”
The executive added that the results from the Southwest zone are expected to positively impact the upcoming prefeasibility study. The latest results will be incorporated into an updated resource that is expected along with the engineering study.
With 8,500 metres of drilling incorporated into the existing resource, the Southwest zone currently contributes 22.6 million inferred tonnes at 0.8 gram gold-equivalent to the company’s inventory. In July, Troilus released an updated resource with 177.3 million indicated tonnes grading 0.75 gram gold, 0.08% copper and 1.17 grams silver, as well as 116.7 million inferred tonnes at 0.73 gram gold, 0.07% copper and 1.04 grams silver. The indicated resource contains 5 million gold-equivalent oz. and features a gold-equivalent grade of 0.87 gram; the inferred portion features 3.2 million gold-equivalent oz., based on a 0.84 gram gold-equivalent grade.
Existing resources are contained within the Southwest, Z87 South, Z87 and J zones. In September, Troilus started a 20,000-metre drill program at the project.
The September PEA outlined a 22-year, US$333 million open pit and underground mine producing an average of 220,000 gold oz. a year over the first five years of operation.
The generated over 2 million gold oz. and 70,000 tonnes of copper from open-pit operations between 1996 and 2010.
The site lies within the Frotet-Evans greenstone belt and is 170 km by road northeast of Chibougamau.
At presstime in Toronto Troilus Gold was trading at $1.07 per share within a 52-week trading range of 42¢ and $1.82 per share.
Pierre Vaillancourt of Haywood Securities has a buy rating on the stock and a price target of $4.00 per share.
“The latest results from the Southwest zone provide encouragement about resource expansion and the prospect to demonstrate mineralization in the gap toward the Z87 zone,” he wrote in a March 16 research note. “While these results will not impact the stock, they demonstrate the growth of the Southwest zone and the potential for extension toward the Z87 zone. We look for more progress as the drill program advances, leading to a prefeasibility study with a more attractive production profile, which will increasingly be focused to the Southwest.”