Benton's partner initiates drill program on the BCF property in Marathon

    THUNDER BAY, ON, March 26 /CNW/ - Benton Resources Corp. ("Benton" or the
"Company") is pleased to report that the Company has been notified by its
joint venture partner Marathon PGM Corporation ("MAR") that diamond drilling
has started on Benton's BCF (formerly east part of the Bermuda) property north
of the Marathon Cu-PGE Deposit. Benton and MAR have recently entered into a
joint venture agreement to develop the project. The drilling will initially
concentrate on defining the northern extension of the Marathon Deposit and
incorporating the results into MAR's resource estimates. MAR has indicated
that 8,000 to 10,000 metres of drilling will be completed over the next few
months. Results of the drilling will be released as they are received and
    Under the terms of the OJVA, MAR has the option to earn a 60%
participating interest in the BCF Property by (i) issuing Benton 120,000
common shares on signing of the OJVA, subject to regulatory approval; (ii)
completing work expenditures of $1.5 million per year during the first four
years of the OJVA and an additional $2 million on or before the fifth
anniversary and; (iii) making cash payments of $500,000 per year on or before
the anniversary date of the OJVA for the first three years (for a total
$1.5 million).
    During the earn-in period, all work will be supervised and carried out by
MAR. After MAR has issued the 120,000 shares, made the $1.5 million cash
payments and spent the $8 million, Marathon will have "earned in" to 60% of
the JV.
    During the earn-in period MAR may mine up to 200 metres north of its
property into the BCF Property. If Marathon mines any part of the BCF Property
prior to the JV, MAR will receive all revenue and (i) pay all costs, (ii) pay
all royalties due from the BCF Property, and (iii) pay an additional 2% NSR
royalty to Benton.
    After the JV is formed, MAR will be operator and any ore that is
discovered on the BCF property will be mined and processed by Marathon at its
facilities. Under the JV agreement, Marathon will charge the JV for all
direct, indirect and overhead costs including a charge to recover its capital
costs as well as a 4% management fee.
    Clinton Barr (P.Geo.), V.P. Exploration for Benton Resources Corp., is
the qualified person responsible for this release.

    About Benton Resources Corp:

    Benton Resources Corp. (the "Company") is a mineral exploration company
listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol BTC. Benton's aggressive
and experienced management team is focused on base and precious group metal
exploration. The Company's diverse property portfolio includes Canadian
projects which are highly prospective for gold, uranium, platinum, palladium,
nickel and copper. The Company currently has approximately $20 million in
working capital and many of its projects are being funded by Joint Venture
partners such as Teck Cominco Limited, Stillwater Mining Company and junior
exploration companies.

    On behalf of the Board of Directors of Benton Resources Corp.
    "Stephen Stares"
    Stephen Stares, President


    Forward-looking statements in this release are made pursuant to the safe
harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform act of 1995.
Investors are cautioned that such forward-looking statements involve risks and

For further information:

For further information: Stephen Stares @ 3290 Willard Ave, Thunder Bay,
Ont., P7E 6J7, Phone (807) 475-7474, Fax (807) 475-7200,; Investor relations: In Canada: First Canadian Capital,
Daniel Boase, Phone (416) 742-5600, Fax (416) 742-6410; In U.S.A.: The
Windward Agency, Kelly Boatright, Phone (704) 588-8600

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