TORONTO, June 24, 2014 /CNW/ - Wallbridge Mining Company Limited (TSX: WM, FWB: WC7) ("Wallbridge") today announced that it is accelerating its exploration program on the Wisner joint venture properties in response to new mineralization being identified in all five target areas investigated so far this year.
- All nine drill holes in the new Twisted Wrench target area intersected weak Cu mineralization;
- Additional copper mineralization intersected at the high grade Cu-PGE South Zone occurrence;
- Anomalous Cu-PGE's intersected in drilling at the new Rusty Blade target area;
- Narrow high-grade Cu-PGE veins extended east of the Broken Hammer open-pit;
- Prospecting identifies new Cu occurrence in outcrop at the new Toothless Saw target area;
- 2014 Wisner funding increased to $2.6 million from $2.0 million, accelerating Lonmin's earn-in;
- Two diamond drill rigs, mechanical stripping, and several prospecting crews currently active testing numerous exploration target areas at Wisner; and
- Over 16,000 metres exploratory drilling forecasted for Lonmin funded joint ventures this year.
Wallbridge's 2014 program is focused on the North Range Joint Venture ("NRJV") and Sudbury Camp Joint Venture ("SCJV") both funded by Lonmin Plc ("Lonmin") and operated by Wallbridge. These have total approved budgets of over $5.1 million running from October 1 to September 30 following Lonmin's fiscal year. Over 16,000 metres of exploratory drilling is forecasted for the Lonmin funded joint ventures this year.
Current work is focused on the Wisner properties ("Wisner") which are part of the NRJV (see Wallbridge press release dated December 17, 2013). Wallbridge and partner Lonmin have agreed to reallocate funds from the overall exploration budget to increase spending on Wisner to $2.6 million from $2.0 million which will accelerate Lonmin's earn-in on the Wisner property package. Wisner has the potential to host numerous Sudbury "Footwall-Type" copper, platinum, palladium and gold ("Cu-PGE") deposits including small near surface deposits, similar to Wallbridge's Broken Hammer open pit mine, as well as larger higher grade deposits at depth, similar to elsewhere in Sudbury.
Two drills, mechanical stripping, and prospecting crews are currently active testing exploration target areas at Wisner (Figure 1). Drilling planned in each target area includes 200-400 meter holes to test near-surface Cu-PGE occurrences and geophysical targets. A second stage of drilling will include 500-1000 meter holes with borehole geophysics to test the more significant intersections at depth.
One drill is currently testing the large Twisted Wrench target area at Wisner. To date, all nine drill holes in this area have intersected weak disseminated and fracture controlled copper sulphide mineralization. Drilling at this area is planned to continue into July.
The second drill at Wisner is working near the South Zone Cu-PGE occurrence testing a number of shallow geophysics anomalies and stepping out from known narrow Cu-PGE intersections. Previously released results include samples containing 25.50 % Cu and another containing 151.95 g/t TPM (Pt + Pd + Au). Drill hole WIS-004 intersected 3.35 m of 2.30 g/t TPM (1.17g/t Pt, 0.99 g/t Pd, and 0.14 g/t Au), 0.18 % Cu and 0.05 % Ni from 5.00 to 8.35 m (previously released results).
Initial drilling this spring at the Rusty Blade target area also identified new anomalous Cu-PGE mineralization with drill hole WIS-141 intersecting 1.00 metre containing 0.14 g/t TPM (0.062 g/t Pt, 0.065 g/t Pd, and 0.011 g/t Au), and 0.10% Cu from 31.26 to 32.26 metres down-hole. Subsequent prospecting has identified copper mineralization in outcrop. Mechanical stripping of overburden is underway and additional drilling is planned for July.
Narrow high grade Cu-PGE veins (Table 1) extending up to 60 metres east of Wallbridge's Broken Hammer open-pit mining project were intersected in four of eight drill holes (see Wallbridge press release dated April 29, 2014). This trend is open at depth and to the northeast.
Table 1. Highlight assays from drilling east of the Broken Hammer open-pit mining project (true widths are 70-90% of core lengths). Results from WIS-136 were previously released April 29, 2014.
Drilling this summer is also planned at the Toothless Saw and Southwest Zone target areas. The Toothless Saw target area includes a new copper occurrence identified by prospecting this spring within a 900 metre long corridor of soil and geophysics anomalies, including a conductor identified by the 2014 UTEM5 ground electromagnetic ("EM") survey. At the Southwest Zone, previous exploration has identified a 600 metre long trend of high grade Cu-PGE-Ni occurrences. Mechanical stripping in 2012 uncovered a new trend of Cu-PGE occurrences with selected samples containing up to 3.90 % Cu with 6.62 g/t TPM. Highlights from previous shallow drilling at the Southwest Zone include drill hole WIS-078 which intersected two zones including 0.5 metres of 26.69 g/t TPM (9.71 g/t Pt, 16.25 g/t Pd, and 0.73 g/t Au), 2.35 % Cu and 1.25 % Ni from 65.5 to 66.0 metres down hole and 13.7 metres of 0.99 g/t TPM (0.43 g/t Pt, 0.49 g/t Pd, and 0.08 g/t Au), 0.11 % Cu and 0.04 % Ni from 109.8 to 123.5 metres down hole (see Wallbridge press release dated October 30, 2012).
Wisner includes five underlying properties which cover 10 kilometres strike length of prospective geology, includes several high grade Cu-PGE occurrences, and has over a dozen identified target areas. Wisner is adjacent to Wallbridge's Broken Hammer open-pit mining project and several Ni-Cu-PGE deposits owned by Vale and Glencore. Lonmin may earn up to a 50% interest in Wisner by funding exploration and making cash option payments totalling $6.0 million over 3 years. Lonmin may then earn an additional 15% interest by committing to fund the Wisner Properties through to a definitive feasibility study and securing the Wallbridge portion of financing through to commercial production.
Exploration is also underway on the Sudbury Camp Joint Venture ("SCJV") and the original North Range Joint Venture ("NRJV") properties with Lonmin. The SCJV has a budget of USD $1.6 million this year, further drilling is planned at the Skynner Lake and Trill properties for August and September. Although $0.6 million has been reallocated specifically to accelerate the Wisner project, exploration funding of $0.9 million is retained for work on the original North Range properties. Fieldwork is underway to follow-up geophysical anomalies and to better constrain and prioritize drilling targets.
Wallbridge is also exploring on the Parkin Offset property, a joint venture with Impala Platinum Holdings Limited, the Frost Lake property, a joint venture with Glencore, and on a number of 100% owned properties in Sudbury. These projects currently have reduced minimum programs.
The Qualified Person responsible for the technical content of this press release is Joshua Bailey, P.Geo., M.Sc., Vice President Exploration For Wallbridge Mining Company Limited.
About Wallbridge Mining
Wallbridge Mining Company Limited (WM:TSX) is currently operating its first polymetallic mine, producing copper, platinum, palladium, and gold from the Broken Hammer open pit mine in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada's premier mining district.
Wallbridge is also actively exploring a large package of properties in Sudbury, including operating several significant exploration joint ventures with partners Lonmin Plc, Impala Platinum Holdings Limited and Glencore in Sudbury.
In 2005, Wallbridge created Duluth Metals Limited (TSX:DM) to explore and develop projects in Minnesota, USA. Duluth Metals has since defined the world's largest undeveloped sulfide platinum group metals, copper and nickel deposit which it is developing through Twin Metals Limited, a joint venture with copper producer Antofagasta Plc. Wallbridge currently retains 10.1 million shares of Duluth Metals (7.4%).
In 2010, Wallbridge created Miocene Metals Limited (TSXV:MII) to explore and develop porphyry copper-gold-molybdenum projects in British Columbia, Canada, within a previously under-recognized belt of Miocene-age intrusions. These projects are early stage with large mineralized structures and alteration zones that are ready for drilling with potential for large tonnage deposits. Miocene is currently in the process of merging with Carube Resources Inc. which has an attractive portfolio of copper-gold exploration properties in Jamaica which are joint ventured with OZ Minerals. Wallbridge currently retains 28.4 million shares of Miocene Metals (40.5%).
Wallbridge has a record of successfully generating high potential mineral projects and structuring partnerships and new companies to create value for its shareholders and its partners.
This press release may contain forward-looking statements (including "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation and "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the US Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995) relating to, among other things, the operations of Wallbridge and the environment in which it operates. Generally, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates" or "does not anticipate", or "believes", or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will be taken", "occur" or "be achieved". Wallbridge has relied on a number of assumptions and estimates in making such forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, the costs associated with the development and operation of its properties. Such assumptions and estimates are made in light of the trends and conditions that are considered to be relevant and reasonable based on information available and the circumstances existing at this time. A number of risk factors may cause actual results, level of activity, performance or outcomes of such exploration and/or mine development to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements including, without limitation, whether such discoveries will result in commercially viable quantities of such mineralized materials, the possibility of changes to project parameters as plans continue to be refined, the ability to execute planned exploration and future drilling programs, the need for additional funding to continue exploration and development efforts, changes in general economic, market and business conditions, and those other risks set forth in Wallbridge's most recent annual information form under the heading "Risk Factors" and in its other public filings. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and such information is inherently subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that are difficult to predict and may be beyond the control of Wallbridge. Although Wallbridge has attempted to identify important risks and factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors and risks that cause actions, events or results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. Consequently, undue reliance should not be placed on such forward-looking statements. In addition, all forward-looking statements in this press release are given as of the date hereof.
Wallbridge disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, save and except as may be required by applicable securities laws. The forward-looking statements contained herein are expressly qualified by this disclaimer.
Image with caption: "Figure 1: Wisner compilation map showing exploration target areas. (CNW Group/Wallbridge Mining Company Limited)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140624_C8534_PHOTO_EN_41694.jpg
SOURCE: Wallbridge Mining Company Limited
For further information:
Please visit the Company's website at www.wallbridgemining.com, or contact:
Wallbridge Mining Company Limited
Joshua Bailey, M.Sc., P.Geo
Vice President Exploration
Tel: (705) 682-9297 ext. 240
Vice President Corporate Communications
Tel: (705) 682-9297 ext. 263