Drill Update Cacao: Fully Preserved Epithermal Vein System Identified Over a 1,000 m Strike Length, With a 10 m True Width, Open Along Strike and to Depth
*SURREY, BC / ACCESSWIRE / September 17, 2021 / *Condor Gold (AIM:CNR; TSX:COG) is pleased to announce that drilling has been completed and all assay results returned from exploration drilling at the Cacao Prospect. Fifteen drill holes for 3,500 m were completed to test the geological concept that the near surface gold mineralisation at Cacao is the top of a fully preserved epithermal gold system. Secondly to test that the gold mineralizing system extends, buried below surface, beyond the 450 m long outcrop where all the drilling had been concentrated to-date. Both objectives have been achieved with a wide zone of high-grade gold mineralisation intercepted below the current mineral resource, and a wide low-grade gold anomaly identified along strike of the outcropping mineralisation that may be the top of a completely hidden, deep-seated extension of the Cacao epithermal gold system. Follow-up drilling is being planned to test both targets at greater depths.
· Cacao epithermal gold system is interpreted as being fully preserved, open along strike and to depth. The latest drilling is clipping the top of the system.
· 10 metre plus true width mineralised zone including the Cacao vein has been confirmed for a strike length of approximately 1,000 m beneath and along strike of the existing Cacao mineral resource
· 25.93 m (*14.9 m true width*) *at 3.94 g/t Au* from 263.82 m, including 4.58 m (*2.6 m true width*) *at 7.76 g/t Au *from 282.12m drill depth (drill hole CCDC033) below the Cacao mineral resource and open to depth and along strike in both directions.
· 39.65 m (*32.9 m true width*) *at 0.38 g/t Au* from 181.47 m, including 3.05 m (*2.5 m true width*) *at 2.34 g/t Au *from 218.07 m drill depth (drill hole CCDC028) beneath alluvial cover some 400 m along strike of the Cacao mineral resource, interpreted as the top of an epithermal system.
*Mark Child, Chairman and CEO commented:*
"Part of Condor's strategy is to demonstrate a 5M oz Gold District. The recently completed 3,500m exploration drill programme has been a success. A 10 metre plus true width mineralised zone including the main Cacao vein has been confirmed for a strike length of approximately 1,000 m beneath and extending to the East of the current Cacao Mineral Resource of 662 Kt at 2.8 g/t gold for 60,000 oz gold. Drill hole CCDC033 intercepted 14.9 m true width at 3.94g/t gold beneath the existing mineral resource, and 700 m along strike of this intercept, drill hole CCDC028 intercepted 32.9 m true width at 0.38g/t gold (see Figure 1). Cacao is interpreted as a fully preserved epithermal gold system due to the sinter on the surface and its preservation in a downthrown block. The current round of drilling has been interpreted to be clipping the top of the gold mineralising system, with the gold grade increasing at depth. It is highly significant that a wide, greater that 10 m true width, mineralised zone for a strike length of 1,000 m, open along strike and down dip, has been identified with grades increasing at depth".
The Cacao prospect is a low-sulphidation epithermal gold vein deposit with an Inferred Mineral Resource of 188,000 tonnes at 2.3 g/t for 14,000 oz open-pittable gold, and 474,000 tonnes at 3.0 g/t for 46,000 oz with underground mining potential, contained within a 450 m strike length to a depth of 150-250 m below surface. It has been identified as a potential satellite deposit for processing at the Company's fully permitted processing plant to be located 4 km away. The mineral resource modelling indicates that Cacao could support a small open pit. Current exploration drilling is focused towards identifying deeper level mineralisation that could support a larger pit or underground mining.
The Cacao prospect sits on a major east-west trending structure with a 3-4 km strike length identified in Condor's regional geophysics and soil sampling data. Other isolated exposures of bedrock along the structure have returned anomalous gold assays. The best results to the east of Cacao are rock chip samples of up to 11.6 g/t gold from artisanal mine workings approximately 1.6 km east of the mineral resource. The Cacao structure occurs within a major downthrown geological block, separated from the Company's principal gold deposit at La India by the late-stage Highway Fault. At La India erosion has exposed high-grade epithermal mineralisation at surface, however, at Cacao the low-lying downthrown block has not been significantly eroded and the epithermal mineralisation is typically hidden and interpreted to be preserved in its entirety beneath the surface.
*Figure 1: Location of Cacao Relative to Permitted Mine Site Infrastructure*
The latest drilling campaign has tested the geological concept that the gold-bearing rock outcrops at Cacao are part of the top of a higher grade, deep-seated, and possibly much more extensive epithermal gold deposit. The depth potential was tested by drilling 50 m and 100 m spaced step-out drill holes around and below the current mineral resource to explore for the higher-grade epithermal boiling zone interpreted to be at depth. Secondly, the deep-seated strike potential was drill tested along 500 m strike extension immediately to the east of the Cacao Mineral Resource with 100 m spaced drill holes to explore for the mineralised structure beneath the alluvial cover. Both objectives have been achieved with positive results:
1. A wide zone of well-developed epithermal quartz veining with the best drill intercept to-date has been returned from the deepest drill hole on the prospect. Drill hole LIDC033 returned a drill intercept of 25.93 m (*14.9 m true width*) *at 3.94 g/t Au* from 263.82 m, including 4.58 m (*2.6 m true width*) *at 7.76 g/t Au *from 282.12m drill depth. This intercept is approximately 260 m below the surface outcrop and suggests that the bonanza zone of high-grade gold mineralisation where geological conditions were ideal for the deposition of gold-bearing quartz veins is found more than 200 m below surface.
2. Wide-spaced exploratory drill holes have detected wide zones of low-grade gold mineralisation some 300-400 m along strike of the Cacao outcrop and current mineral resource at a depth of 100-150 m below surface (i.e. Drill hole LIDC038 with 39.65 m (*32.9 m true width*) *at 0.38 g/t Au* from 181.47 m, including 3.05 m (*2.5 m true width*) *at 2.34 g/t Au *from 218.07 m drill depth. This weak and diffuse gold mineralisation and associated strong hydrothermal alteration is characteristic of the depleted vapor-deposits that can occur above an epithermal deposit and it is anticipated that higher-grade gold veins will be found below.
Further drilling is being planned to follow-up on both targets. Further resource extension drilling to expand the mineral resource down into the high-grade zone at depth, and exploratory drilling along strike below the wide, low-grade gold anomaly to test the concept that this is the low grade halo above a deep strike extension of the higher grade epithermal system.
*Figure 1. Long-sections looking north at the drill intercepts at Cacao and the eastern strike extension showing drill intercepts and the current resource (shaded pink) and pit shells (grey) (top), contoured gold grade (centre) and contoured true width thickness (bottom).*
*Long Section Greater than 10 m thick*
*Table 1. Top ten gold intercepts from Cacao drilling.*
Drill hole ID
Intercept From (m)
Intercept To (m)
True Width (m)
True grade-width (gm/t)
*Cacao*:* Discovery to Inferred Mineral Resource*
An east-west-striking ridge of chalcedonic phreatic breccia, 10 to 50 m wide and about 600 m long, was first identified at Cacao in 2006. Rock chip and trench sampling by Condor in 2006-2007 identified some gold-bearing subvertical crustiform quartz veins within the breccia with trench intercepts of up to 1.0 m at 11.54 g/t gold.
Drilling in 2007 and 2008 demonstrated that the phreatic breccia narrows downwards and gives way to a higher grade, classic crustiform epithermal vein. Identification of float boulders of hot spring sinter in 2015 provided the evidence that there has been minimal erosion in the Cacao area, suggesting that the epithermal boiling zone where the bulk of the gold would be expected to be deposited is still preserved and concealed at depth. Drilling in 2016 added support to this model and further highlighted that the epithermal mineralisation is part of a long-lived hydrothermal system with numerous mineralising ‘events' and early hydrothermal breccias cut by later crustiform veins, and some significant drill intercepts of up to 7.85 m (3.9 m true thickness) at 3.75 g/t gold (CCDC023, approximately 150 m below surface).
Mineral resource modelling based on the 26 drill holes for 2890 m drilled by the end of 2016 suggested that Cacao is amenable to open pit and underground mining despite the lower grades encountered at surface. A mineral resource estimate published in January 2019 contained 188,000 tonnes at 2.3 g/t for 14,000 oz open-pit gold, and 474,000 tonnes at 3.0 g/t for 46,000 oz with underground mining potential. This mineral resource is contained within a 450 m strike length to a depth of 150-250 m below surface (Table 2).
*Table 2: Cacao Inferred Mineral Resource, prepared in accordance with CIM and Canadian NI 43-101 (25^th January 2019; SRK Consulting (UK) Ltd).*
*Gold grade (g/t)*
*Contained gold (koz)*
0.5 g/t (OP)
2.0 g/t (UG)
(1) The methods applied to conducting the geological modelling and estimation have not changed from those described in the Technical Report. The Cacao pits are amenable to open pit mining and the Mineral Resource Estimates are constrained within Whittle optimised pits, which SRK based on the following parameters: A Gold price of USD1,500 per ounce of gold with no adjustments. Prices are based on experience gained from other SRK projects. Metallurgical recovery assumptions are between 91-96% for gold, based on testwork conducted to date. Marginal costs of USD19.36/t for processing, USD5.69/t G&A and USD2.35/t for mining, slope angles defined by the Company Geotechnical study which range from angle 40 - 48°, a haul cost of USD1.25/t was added to the Mestiza ore tonnes to consider transportation to the processing plant.
(2) Underground Mineral Resources beneath the open pit are reported at a cut-off grade of 2.0 g/t over a minimum width of 1.0m. Cut-off grades are based on a price of USD1,500 per ounce of gold and gold recoveries of 91 percent for resources, costs of USD19.36/t for processing, USD4.55/t G&A and USD50.0/t for mining, without considering revenues from other metals.
*Table 3. Assay results from Cacao exploration drilling.*
Drill hole ID
Collar UTM WGS84-16N
Drill Width (m)
True Width (m)
580250E 1411900N 453mamsl -50/360
580250E 1411899N 453mamsl -60/360
580047E 1411918N 450mamsl -55/360
Cacao hangingwall vein 154.02
580047E 1411919N 450mamsl -65/360
580148E 1411886N 448mamsl -65/360
580349E 1411863N 452mamsl -53/360
580549E 1411869N 451mamsl -45/360
Cacao Sth 176.90
580648E 1411888N 450mamsl -51/360
580752E 1411826N 447mamsl -46/360
Cacao Sth 197.50
580849E 1411848N 444mamsl -44/360
580946E 1411841N 434mamsl -45/360
582200E 1411670N 445mamsl -45/360
582100E 1411620N 445mamsl -60/360
*Note: Bureau Veritas Mineral Laboratories, Canada. www.bureauveritas.com/um was used for the drill assay results.
1. The sample chain of custody is managed by the Condor's Geology Team on site. Reported results are from diamond drilled core samples. Intervals of core to be analysed are split into half using a mechanized core cutter, with one half sent to the Laboratory for geochemical analysis and the remaining half kept in storage for future reference and uses. Diamond drilled core has been a HQ size and recoveries are consistently 100% across all drill holes intercept reported.
2. Sampling and analytical procedures are subject to a comprehensive quality assurance and quality control program. The QAQC program involves insertion of duplicate samples, blanks and certified reference materials in the sample stream. Gold analyses are performed by standard fire assaying protocols using a 50-gram charge with atomic absorption (AAS) finish and a gravimetric finish performed for assays greater than 10 grams per tonne.
3. Sample preparation and analysis are performed by the independent Bureau Veritas Laboratories, Canada. Samples are crushed and prepared in Managua and pulp samples for fire assay are dispatched to Vancouver, Canada. The Laboratory meets the requirements of ISO/IEC 17025 & ISO 9001, and employs a Laboratory Information Management System for sample tracking, quality control and reporting.
*About the Sampling & Assay Procedures*
Drill core was cut, and half core samples collected and bagged by Condor staff on-site. Samples were transported to Bureau Veritas accredited sample preparation laboratory in Managua every week in batches of two or three drill holes, generally being submitted to the lab within 5-10 days of completing the drill hole. Sub-samples of the pulverised rock samples were forwarded for assay to Bureau Veritas accredited analytical laboratory in Vancouver, Canada.
*- Ends -*
For further information please visit www.condorgold.com or contact:
Condor Gold plc
Mark Child, Chairman and CEO
+44 (0) 20 7493 2784
Beaumont Cornish Limited
Roland Cornish and James Biddle
+44 (0) 20 7628 3396
SP Angel Corporate Finance LLP
+44 (0) 20 3470 0470
H&P Advisory Limited
Andrew Chubb and Nilesh Patel
+44 207 907 8500
Tim Blythe and Megan Ray
+44 (0) 20 7138 3204
*About Condor Gold plc:*
Condor Gold plc was admitted to AIM in May 2006 and dual listed on the TSX in January 2018. The Company is a gold exploration and development company with a focus on Nicaragua.
In August 2018, the Company announced that the Ministry of the Environment in Nicaragua had granted the Environmental Permit ("*EP*") for the development, construction and operation of a processing plant with capacity to process up to 2,800 tonnes per day at its wholly-owned La India gold project ("La India Project"). The EP is considered the master permit for mining operations in Nicaragua.
La India Project contains a Mineral Resource of 9,850 Kt at 3.6 g/t gold for 1.14 M oz gold in the Indicated category and 8,479 Kt at 4.3 g/t gold for 1.18 M oz gold in the Inferred category. A gold price of $1,500/oz and a cut-off grade of 0.5 g/t and 2.0 g/t gold were assumed for open pit and underground resources, respectively. A cut-off grade of 1.5 g/t gold was furthermore applied within a part of the Inferred Resource. Mineral Resources are not Mineral Reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability. There is no certainty that any part of the Mineral Resources will be converted to Mineral Reserves.
Environmental Permits were granted in April and May 2020 for the Mestiza and America open pits respectively, both located close to La India. The Mestiza open pit hosts 92 Kt at a grade of 12.1 g/t gold (36,000 oz contained gold) in the Indicated Mineral Resource category and 341 Kt at a grade of 7.7 g/t gold (85,000 oz contained gold) in the Inferred Mineral Resource category*. *The America open pit hosts 114 Kt at a grade of 8.1 g/t gold (30,000 oz) in the Indicated Mineral Resource category and 677 Kt at a grade of 3.1 g/t gold (67,000 oz) in the Inferred Mineral Resource category. Following the permitting of the Mestiza and America open pits, together with the La India open pit Condor has 1.12 M oz gold open pit Mineral Resources permitted for extraction.
Neither the contents of the Company's website nor the contents of any website accessible from hyperlinks on the Company's website (or any other website) is incorporated into, or forms part of, this announcement.
The Mineral Resource Estimate has been completed by Ben Parsons, a Principal Consultant (Resource Geology) with SRK Consulting (U.S.) Inc, who is a Member of the Australian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, MAusIMM(CP). He has some nineteen years' experience in the exploration, definition and mining of precious and base metals. Ben Parsons is a full-time employee of SRK Consulting (U.S.), Inc, an independent consultancy, and has sufficient experience which is relevant to the style of mineralisation and type of deposit under consideration, and to the type of activity which he is undertaking to qualify as a "qualified person" as defined under National Instrument 43-101 - Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects ("NI 43-101") of the Canadian Securities Administrators and as required by the June 2009 Edition of the AIM Note for Mining and Oil & Gas Companies. Ben Parsons consents to the inclusion in the announcement of the matters based on their information in the form and context in which it appears and confirms that this information is accurate and not false or misleading.
The Qualified Persons responsible for the Technical Report are Dr Tim Lucks of SRK Consulting (UK) Limited, and Mr Fernando Rodrigues, Mr Stephen Taylor and Mr Ben Parsons of SRK Consulting (U.S.) Inc. Mr Parsons assumes responsibility for the MRE, Mr Rodrigues the open pit mining aspects, Mr Taylor the underground mining aspects and Dr Lucks for the oversight of the remaining technical disciplines and compilation of the report.
The technical and scientific information in this press release has been reviewed, verified and approved by Gerald D. Crawford, P.E., who is a "qualified person" as defined by NI 43-101 and is the Chief Technical Officer of Condor Gold plc.
The technical and scientific information in this press release has been reviewed, verified and approved by Andrew Cheatle, P.Geo., who is a "qualified person" as defined by NI 43-101.
*Forward Looking Statements*
All statements in this press release, other than statements of historical fact, are ‘forward-looking information' with respect to the Company within the meaning of applicable securities laws, including statements with respect to: the ongoing mining dilution and pit optimisation studies, and the incorporation of same into any mining production schedule, future development and production plans at La India Project. Forward-looking information is often, but not always, identified by the use of words such as: "seek", "anticipate", "plan", "continue", "strategies", "estimate", "expect", "project", "predict", "potential", "targeting", "intends", "believe", "potential", "could", "might", "will" and similar expressions. Forward-looking information is not a guarantee of future performance and is based upon a number of estimates and assumptions of management at the date the statements are made including, among others, assumptions regarding: future commodity prices and royalty regimes; availability of skilled labour; timing and amount of capital expenditures; future currency exchange and interest rates; the impact of increasing competition; general conditions in economic and financial markets; availability of drilling and related equipment; effects of regulation by governmental agencies; the receipt of required permits; royalty rates; future tax rates; future operating costs; availability of future sources of funding; ability to obtain financing and assumptions underlying estimates related to adjusted funds from operations. Many assumptions are based on factors and events that are not within the control of the Company and there is no assurance they will prove to be correct.
Such forward-looking information involves known and unknown risks, which may cause the actual results to be materially different from any future results expressed or implied by such forward-looking information, including, risks related to: mineral exploration, development and operating risks; estimation of mineralisation and resources; environmental, health and safety regulations of the resource industry; competitive conditions; operational risks; liquidity and financing risks; funding risk; exploration costs; uninsurable risks; conflicts of interest; risks of operating in Nicaragua; government policy changes; ownership risks; permitting and licencing risks; artisanal miners and community relations; difficulty in enforcement of judgments; market conditions; stress in the global economy; current global financial condition; exchange rate and currency risks; commodity prices; reliance on key personnel; dilution risk; payment of dividends; as well as those factors discussed under the heading "Risk Factors" in the Company's annual information form for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020 dated March 31, 2021 and available under the Company's SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com.
Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking information, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that such information will prove to be accurate as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise unless required by law.
Assay The laboratory test conducted to determine the proportion of a mineral within a rock or other material. Usually reported as parts per million which is equivalent to grams of the mineral (i.e. gold) per tonne of rock
Breccia A fragmental rock, composed of rounded to angular broken rock fragments held together by a mineral cement or in a fine-grained matrix. They can be formed by igneous, tectonic, sedimentary or hydrothermal processes.
Chalcedonic A variety of quartz formed by microscopic or submicroscopic crystals. In an epithermal environment, chalcedony is formed in low temperature and pressure conditions high in the system.
Crustiform A quartz vein texture describing successive banding oriented parallel to vein walls and defined by differences in the size of the crystals, mineral composition or colour.
Down-dip Further down towards the deepest parts of an ore body or zone of mineralisation.
Down-throw Referring to the rock that has moved downwards on a fault relative to the other side.
Epithermal Mineral veins and ore deposited from fluids at shallow depths at low pressure and temperatures ranging from 50-300°C.
Fault The plane along which two rock masses have moved or slide against each other in opposing directions.
Grade The proportion of a mineral within a rock or other material. For gold mineralisation this is usually reported as grams of gold per tonne of rock (g/t)
g/t grams per tonne
Indicated Mineral Resource That part of a Mineral Resource for which tonnage, densities, shape, physical characteristics, grade and mineral content can be estimated with a reasonable level of confidence. It is based on exploration, sampling and testing information gathered through appropriate techniques from locations such as outcrops, trenches, pits, workings and drill holes. The locations are too widely or inappropriately spaced to confirm geological and/or grade continuity but are spaced closely enough for continuity to be assumed.
Inferred Mineral Resource That part of a Mineral Resource for which tonnage, grade and mineral content can be estimated with a low level of confidence. It is inferred from geological evidence and assumed but not verified geological and/or grade continuity. It is based on information gathered through appropriate techniques from locations such as outcrops, trenches, pits, workings and drill holes that may be limited, or of uncertain quality and reliability,
Kt Thousand tonnes
Mineral Resource A concentration or occurrence of material of economic interest in or on the Earth's crust in such a form, quality, and quantity that there are reasonable and realistic prospects for eventual economic extraction. The location, quantity, grade, continuity and other geological characteristics of a Mineral Resource are known, estimated from specific geological knowledge, or interpreted from a well constrained and portrayed geological model.
NI 43-101 Canadian National Instrument 43-101 a common standard for reporting of identified mineral resources and ore reserves
Open pit mining A method of extracting minerals from the earth by excavating downwards from the surface such that the ore is extracted in the open air (as opposed to underground mining).
Phreatic breccias Fragmental rocks formed near the Earth's surface by the interaction of hot rock and cold water, or vice versa. Commonly occur at the top of mineralized epithermal gold systems.
Quartz veins Deposit of quartz rock that develop in fractures and fissures in the surrounding rock. They are deposited by saturated geothermal liquids rising to the surface through the cracks in the rock and then cooling, taking on the shape of the cracks that they fill.
Sinter A mineral deposit that presents a porous or vesicular texture; its structure shows small cavities. These may be siliceous deposits or calcareous deposits.
Strike length The longest horizontal dimension of an ore body or zone of mineralisation.
Vein A sheet-like body of crystallised minerals within a rock, generally forming in a discontinuity or crack between two rock masses. Economic concentrations of gold are often contained within vein minerals.
*SOURCE:* Condor Gold plc
View source version on accesswire.com: