|October 27, 2009|
Focus Confirms Bulk Tonnage Gold Potential at Nueva California
|October 27, 2009; Vancouver, Canada: David Cass, President of Focus Ventures Ltd. (TSX-V: FCV.V "Focus"), is pleased to announce assay results for the first-pass drill program at the Nueva California project in north-central Peru, located some 35km north of the Pierina gold mine. |
Four holes were drilled for a total of 405m. All holes intersected epithermal style gold mineralization, with higher grades (>5 g/t Au) associated with silicified and hydrothermally brecciated sediments. Significant mineralized intercepts include:
Simon Ridgway, a Director of Focus, said: "Our preliminary drill program has successfully verified the high-grades mined historically and confirmed the lower grade, near surface, bulk tonnage potential of the Nueva California mineralization in all holes. We are currently permitting a much larger drill program which will help to fully investigate the economic potential of the gold-silver system. We are eager to drill test the lower levels of the existing mine where geophysics has mapped a near surface coincident chargeability and conductivity anomaly beneath the lower most mine workings. The anomaly is open at depth and while open ended extends at least 400 m along trend, and is interpreted to be the down dip extension of the known mineralization."
The current drill holes were located in the upper elevations of the mine where the geology is poorly understood because the underground workings are mostly collapsed and inaccessible. Each hole was oriented to try to avoid the underground workings. Where workings were intercepted and/or no core was recovered, grades of nil g/t Au were conservatively assigned to calculate the weighted average grades. Drill plans, sections and drill core photos will be available shortly on the Focus website www.focusventuresltd.com.
Strongly silicified and mineralized zones of argillite intercepted in the holes are interpreted to be roof pendants and xenoliths hosted by strongly quartz - sericite altered granodiorite dikes. The granodiorite hosts low-grade but potentially bulk-tonnage gold mineralization assaying between 0.2 -- 2 g/t Au. The rocks intercepted in the hanging wall to the old workings are a mix of disturbed and unconsolidated gossanous and altered granodiorite and argillite boulders, with intermittent zones of bedrock of the same composition.
Summary of Drill Results
* Interval 2.70m -- 3.6m assaying 171 g/t Au was capped at 30 g/t Au for the purposes of this calculation
The drilling has confirmed the presence of surface/near surface, potentially economic bulk tonnage mineralization in the upper levels of the mine that could be amenable to open pit mining.
Geophysics strongly suggests that a low angle post-mineral fault intercepted in the drilling, and which juxtaposes the mineralization against un-mineralized phyllic altered granodiorite at depth, is a feature unique to the upper level of the mine. It is believed that eastward movement along the flat fault has displaced the upper mineralized zone to the east from the roots of the mineralized system represented by the lower levels of the mine. A strong chargeability -- conductivity geophysical anomaly directly underneath the lowermost underground mine workings is most likely mapping the downward continuation of the mineralization. Historical underground sampling and mapping indicates wide intercepts of potentially mineralized hanging wall granodiorites and argillites exposed in these lower adits.
Further drilling is now required at Nueva California in the area of the old mine workings and also along the trend of the mineralization where geophysical anomalies have been defined under alluvial gravel. Permitting for a 3,000m drill program is underway.
The Nueva California Property is located in the Cordillera Blanca, in north-central Peru at an altitude of 3,300m a.s.l. approximately 35km due north from Barrick Gold's Pierina mine. Artisanal underground and open pit mining operations commenced in 1983 exploiting a series of parallel northwest-southeast trending epithermal gold-silver mineralized zones, largely concealed by gravel overburden, with a reported head grade of 8 g/t Au and 120 g/t Ag. Gold and silver are produced on site via a small heap leach circuit and recovery plant. The mine has never been drilled or systematically explored. Underground and open pit mining has defined a mineralized zone some 800 m wide, 250 m along strike and open, and to depths of up to 100m.
Focus holds an option to earn 100% of the Nueva California property from the property owner, a private Peruvian company. The terms of the Option require exploration expenditures on the Property of US$3 million and cash payments to the owner totaling US$3 million, over a period of 4 years. To complete the exercise of the option, Focus must pay the owner US$4 per ounce of gold defined in the reserve category as determined by a bankable feasibility study, and for the number of ounces of gold produced during a 6 year period thereafter that is over and above the number of ounces defined in such a study, up to a maximum of 2.5 million ounces, or US$10 million. A 1.5% net smelter return royalty is also payable to Radius Gold Inc. which assigned the option to Focus.
Technical Drill Hole Summaries
Hole DDH NC-001 (Azimuth 065⁰, inclination 55⁰) was drilled perpendicular to the trend of the underground workings. Moraine gravel and boulders were drilled to 12.2m followed by strongly weathered and gossanous regolith consisting of boulders of quartz-sericite altered granodiorite, hydrothermal vein quartz, siliceous hydrothermal breccias and silicified black argillite with a variably gossanous clay -- mud matrix. Gold values are moderate and consistent throughout this unit and range from 0.1 to 2.3 g/t Au. From 35m to 45m a sericitized/argillized intrusive was intersected. Intensely silicified and hydrothermally brecciated black argillites with an average grade of 1.33 g/t Au, and individual intervals assaying up to 7.3 g/t Ag and 200 g/t Ag (54.8 -- 56m) were drilled from 48m to 58.9m. At 63.10m a low angle fault truncated the mineralization and juxtaposed it against a strongly quartz- sericite altered, coarse grained granodiorite intrusive which was drilled down to end of the hole at 93m.
Hole DDH NC-002 (Azimuth 020⁰, inclination of 45⁰) This hole tested for the downward continuation of the mineralization underneath the old mine workings. From surface to 15.6m, moraine gravel and boulders consisting of seriticitized granodiorite, drusy quartz veinlets and minor black argillite in a gossanous clay -- mud matrix was intersected. From 15.6m to 39m bedrock of intensely siliceous brecciated and gossanous black argillite with local drusy quartz vein stockworks was intercepted. From 0m to 28.45m the interval returned an average grade of 1 g/t Au. From 28.45 to 37.10m the average grade returned was 4.14 g/t Au, including an individual interval of 26.8 g/t Au and 194 g/t Ag from 29.4m to 30.2m. At 39m the same low angle fault intercepted in DDH--NC--01 was intersected and the mineralization was truncated. The same altered footwall granodiorites were drilled in the footwall of the fault until the end of the hole at 90m.
Hole DDH NC-003 (drilled from the same platform as DDH NC-002, azimuth of 070⁰, inclination 45⁰) This hole was drilled to determine the attitude of the low angle fault encountered in the previous holes. The same mixed moraine unit with an average grade of 8.8 g/t* Au and 122 g/t Ag was intercepted to depth of 7.4m. The higher grade was attributed to boulder of gossanous hydrothermal breccia from 2.7m to 3.6m, which is possibly a remnant of an eroded gossan cap that assayed 171 g/t Au and 816 g/t Ag (*capped at 30 g/t Au for the purposes of this calculation). Down hole from 7.4m to 69.9m the same heterolithic unit intersected in DDH-NC-001 consisting of phyllic altered and weathered granodiorite, granodiorite with quartz vein stockwork and silicified and brecciated argillites was intersected. This mineralized unit assayed 1.84 g/t Au from surface to 69.6m, with the highest assay of 171 g/t Au between 2.7m to 3.6m cut to 30 g/t in the weighted average grade calculation. Uncapped, the same 69.6m interval assays 3.66 g/t Au. Underground workings were encountered from 35.1m to 37.25m, and in several places from 62.9m to 70.6m. In some cases, narrow intercepts of wood with no core loss indicated complete collapse of the workings.
Hole DDH NC-004 (108m north-east of DDH NC-002 & 003, azimuth 005⁰, inclination 45⁰) Drilled oblique to the trend of the underground workings in order to penetrate the southeast extension of the zone underneath the mine workings. From surface to 27.6m the hole cut fresh granite boulders within fluvio-glacial gravels. From around 27.6m to 46.95m a mineralized sequence of black silicified argillites and altered granodiorites were drilled. From 46.95m to the end of the hole (120m) barren footwall altered granodiorite was drilled. The low angle fault gouge as intersected in the previous holes was not encountered suggesting that the mineralized hangingwall unit may have undergone some gravitational sliding.
Sampling Quality Analysis and Quality Control
The drill program and drill core sampling, including the Quality Assurance/Quality Control program was supervised by David Cass, PGeo, Focus's President, and Mark Slauenwhite, Focus's Exploration Manager. Core was first split in half using a diamond core splitter and then logged, and each box photographed prior to sampling. Half-core samples were bagged, security-sealed and transported by Focus personnel to ALS Chemex laboratories in Lima for analysis. Gold was assayed by Atomic Adsorption Spectrometry with fire assay gravimetric finish. Silver was determined by multi-acid digestion and ICP-AES, with fire assay gravimetric finish. ALS Chemex's quality control system complies with International Standards ISO 9001:2000 and ISO 17025:2005. Analytical accuracy and precision are monitored by the analysis of reagent blanks, reference material and replicate samples. Quality control is further assured by the insertion of blind certified reference material and blanks into the sample stream at regular intervals by Focus personnel in order to independently assess analytical accuracy. Finally, representative sample pulps are forwarded to an ISO-compliant third party laboratory for additional quality control.
The scientific and technical information in this release was prepared under the supervision of Mr. David Cass, Focus's President, who is a member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia, and a "Qualified Person" in accordance with NI 43 101.
About Focus Ventures
Focus Ventures was recently listed on the TSX Venture Exchange, and currently has 19.3 million shares issued. It has assembled an experienced technical team of geologists and consultants with superior knowledge and operational capabilities in Peru to search out quality gold projects. Focus's strategy is to identify and acquire former producing mines or un-tested advanced gold properties that show potential to become new mines. For further information on Focus Ventures Ltd., please call 604-688-5288 or visit our web site (www.focusventuresltd.com).
ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD
David Cass, President
Investor relations: Erin Ostrom / Ralph Rushton
Shares Issued: 19.3-million
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
You can view the Next News Releases item: Thu Nov 5, 2009, Focus Arranges $6.0 Million Private Placement & Strengthens Management Team
You can view the Previous News Releases item: Fri Oct 9, 2009, Preliminary Drilling Underway at Nueva California
You can return to the main News Releases page, or press the Back button on your browser.