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Penny’s gold mine looms as prosperous find for Horizon Minerals

Horizon Minerals drilling in the WA Goldfields near Kalgoorlie. Credit: File

Horizon Minerals is charging towards a resource estimate upgrade after completing 2552m of drilling in eight holes at its wholly-owned and fully-permitted Penny’s Find underground gold mine, 50km north-east of Kalgoorlie in Western Australia’s Goldfields region.

The latest results show its high-grade gold lode is open at depth plunging northward, with intercepts including 3.2m at 4.19 grams per tonne gold from 318.3m, 1m grading 7.49g/t from 363.9m and 0.78m going 12.85g/t gold from 331.48m. Resources at Penny’s Find stand at 270,000 tonnes grading 4.99g/t gold for 43,000 ounces, which Horizon plans to exploit using a decline from the base of the old open-pit mine.

The new extensional drill results will add to the company’s resource base, with an upgraded reserve and resource estimate due in the second half of the year after it updates mine optimisation and design studies.

Horizon is developing a sequence of underground mines, with Penny’s Find planned to follow the proposed Cannon gold mine development, which is scheduled for commencement later this year on its 135,000 tonnes at 4.1g/t ore body.

The bold plan is projected to bring early cash flow and long project life, in addition to reducing external funding requirements by growing organically as production profits flow in.

This drill program has confirmed the high-grade mineralisation at Penny’s Find is continuous at depth below the current resource and also along strike to the north which shall enhance the future underground development of this fully approved project. We look forward to updating the resource estimate in the September quarter and progressing the feasibility study shortly thereafter. Horizon Minerals chief executive Grant Haywood

The company has a significant 1100-square-kilometre tenement position centred around Kalgoorlie and a current resource base of 1.24 million ounces of gold at an average grade of 1.7g/t gold, spread over 13 separate deposits. It sees the 448,000-ounce Boorara gold deposit as the base load, complemented by high-grade open-pit and underground gold mines within a 50km radius. Horizon also owns the Nimbus silver-zinc deposit, containing 20 million ounces of silver, in the Kalgoorlie area.

Management says its 2021 drilling at Penny’s Find identified a new lode north of its existing gold resource. It was the target of the current eight-hole drilling program and was comprised of 1926m of reverse-circulation (RC) probing and 626m of diamond core tails.

Gold mineralisation at Penny’s Find is hosted in narrow quartz veins at the contact between footwall sediments and hangingwall basalt. Veins dip about 60 degrees to the north-east and make up a mineralised zone of between 1m and 5m thick, containing only minor sulphides.

Previous open-pit mining was completed in 2018 and yielded 18,300 ounces of gold at 4.47g/t down to 85m, with ore being free-milling and having high gravity-recoverable gold.

Quartz reef was intersected in every hole of the current program and although grade was consistent, the company says the ore thickness is generally thin, except in one hole that contains a 3m quartz vein showing visible gold giving 1.45m at 2.61g/t and 3.2m going 4.19g/t. Management says the intersection is isolated from other drilling, presenting an excellent opportunity for it to delineate further thick high-grade gold mineralisation.

It is also considering plans to test down dip and along strike to potentially add additional ounces to its current resource in the area.

Both Cannon and Penny’s Find will deliver high-grade gold ore to the nearby Greenfields Toll Treatment plant in Coolgardie, where the company has a production agreement for 200,000 tonnes per annum with FMR Investments. It should then start generating the cash needed to fund its much bigger production and exploration ambitions.

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