Leading low-cost intermediate gold producer Alacer Gold Corp. (ASX: AQG) has announced that the ongoing Ardich step-out drilling programme has confirmed a significant extension of the mineralisation at the Turkish project.
Rod Antal, Alacer’s president and CEO, said the interim Indicated Mineral Resource has been increased 28% to 816,600 contained gold ounces, while the Inferred Mineral Resource has increased by 519% to 593,900 contained gold ounces.
Exploration has been focused on determining the extent of the viable mineralised target rather than infill drilling for resource conversion. Exploration continues and is being accelerated with seven diamond drill rigs currently on site.
Mr Antal said the interim Mineral Resource extends approximately 1.4 km along a NW/SE strike, representing areas with enough drill density to define a resource.
He said surface mapping indicates the mineralised target could extend beyond two km. Ardich is located approximately six km northeast of the Çöpler Gold Mine, one of the largest in Turkey.
The updated Mineral Resource estimate consists of predominantly oxide ore, with some sulphide ore, totalling:
- Indicated Mineral Resource of 816,600 ounces of gold at an average grade of 1.60 Au g/t (15.86Mt)
- Inferred Mineral Resource of 593,900 ounces at an average grade of 2.1 Au g/t (8.80Mt)
“The Ardich Mineral Resource has grown into a significant discovery. We are continuing to define the extent of the mineralization, with the expectation that the deposit will continue to grow with additional drilling,” Mr Antal said.
Ardich is an important part of our medium-term growth strategy to deliver significant additional oxide production from near-mine deposits. Both Ardich and Çöpler Saddle abut existing active mining areas.
“Our study team is working on options for starter pits and concurrently the exploration team is rapidly exploring the SE area of Ardich, which though less explored, shows great promise and may be brought into production faster given its proximity to, and probable connection with, Çakmaktepe.
“We are in an enviable position to have multiple processing options adjacent to quality near-mine targets such as the Ҫӧpler Saddle and Ardich. We are working on the development plans to deliver additional ounces in both the shorter and for the long term.”