Antilles hits paydirt at historical Cuban gold mine | Ralph-Lauren

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Antilles Gold has hit paydirt at its La Demajagua project in southern Cuba, with resource drilling across the historical Delita mine area delivering wide intercepts of high-grade gold and silver mineralisation.

First assays from the current campaign bode well for the remainder of the 15,000-metre diamond drilling program with better intercepts including 27.5 metres at 7.2 grams per tonne gold. That hit included an impressive 7.65m interval grading at 15.5 g/t gold and 273.9g/t silver from 146m down-hole.

The company has now completed more than 10,000m of resource drilling for 90 holes and reported results from the first 17 holes. Remaining hole samples are in the lab awaiting assay.

Interestingly, the company’s drilling is showing an impressive hit rate with all holes returning intercepts of more than 1 g/t gold and 14 of the initial 17 holes returning significant intercepts grading at more than 4 g/t gold.

Silver grades in the drill holes are not to be sneezed at either with one hole returning 1.5m at an incredible 736 g/t, or 23.66 ounces per tonne from 158m down-hole.

Other notable gold intercepts include 17.5m at 2.92 g/t from only 17.5m down-hole and 31.5m at 4.95 g/t including 2m grading a stunning 29.9 g/t gold and 279.5 g/t silver from 133m down-hole, demonstrating continuity of grade from near surface to the depths of the emerging sulphide system.

Antilles’ drilling now looks to be locked onto the rich mineralisation at Delita and shows the deposit extending along more than two kilometres of strike, with diamond holes tracking the sulphidic lodes at more than 200m below surface.

We are pleased to receive the first set of results from the current drilling program and are impressed at this stage of the program with the high grade of ore that could be available for a straightforward and low-cost open pit mining operation at La Demajagua.

With the company’s drilling seemingly confirming results of historical exploration across the dormant Delita mine environs, the aspiring miner now looks set to accelerate its development program over the project area.

Already eyeing a bankable feasibility study, or “BFS” Antilles could surprise the market with its tempo.

Underpinning its development momentum is the wealth of historical data provided by the company’s joint venture partner, state-owned GeoMinera. The vast dataset over La Demajagua and Delita consists of a considerable body of work completed by previous explorers, including a database of 50,000m of drilling data, an onsite library of drill core, metallurgical testwork and various feasibility studies.

One of the studies was completed by respected Australian-based engineering group Minproc.

Based on previous drilling data, Antilles is currently looking to prove up a resource of 16-to-20 million tonnes grading at 2.3-to-2.7 g/t gold and 17-to-23 g/t silver. Importantly, such a resource would host more than 1.2 million ounces of gold and 8.7 million ounces of silver, which would comfortably underpin a feasibility study.

However, Antilles appears to be already set on that path and has put forward a plan to utilise its sulphide mining and processing expertise as part of its earlier preliminary economic assessment of the project.

The company is proposing a staged development of Delita, with the first phase of mining targeting an 800,000 tonne per year open pit mine and processing operation that could produce 60,000 tonnes of high-grade gold-silver sulphide concentrate per annum over a six-year mine life.

Early bench-scale testwork indicates sulphide concentrates from Delita might grade as high as 47 g/t gold and 380 g/t silver and deliver about 90,500 ounces of gold and 730,000 ounces of silver per annum into Antilles’ and GeoMinera’s coffers.

Following completion of open pit mining a second phase of development would encompass underground operations. Interestingly, the deeper drilling of the deposit is already providing more than a nod and wink to the company’s plans with early sampling pointing to increasing gold and silver grades with depth.

With a maiden resource on the horizon in Cuba, Antilles has set the stage for a BFS that will leave it with a decision to mine as early as 2023. Clearly a case of watch this space.

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