West-Perth based explorer Azure Minerals (ASX: AZS) has confirmed near-surface, high-grade, sulphide-rich gold and cobalt mineralisation at its wholly-owned Sara Alicia project in Mexico, encountering up to 53.8 grams per tonne gold and 2.82% cobalt.
Azure’s stage two diamond drilling program intersected the 53.8g/t over 0.90m and the best cobalt 2.82% result over 0.80m.
The 13-hole program totalled 1,126.9m and tested extensions to mineralisation identified in the 2017 maiden program, which pulled out up to 26.2m at 9.5g/t gold and 1.26% cobalt.
Azure said it unexpectedly drilled into a mining void during the campaign and “the old mine workings may be more extensive than recorded in the historical data”.
This drill hole featured one of the best cobalt intercepts from surface of 3.65m at 1.19% cobalt and a 24.95m intersection at 0.312% cobalt from 9.15m.
The same drill hole also returned one of the highest-grade gold intersections, which was the abovementioned 0.90m at 52.8g/t from 26.10, as well as other intervals including 3.3m at 26.27g/t from 24.65 and 19.60m at 8.65g/t gold from 10.65m.
The 1.9m mine void stretched from 22.75m to 24.65m downhole.
Drill core samples were extracted from immediately above and below the void, and assayed at 19.95g/t gold and 0.907% cobalt, and 19.0g/t gold and 1.065% cobalt, respectively.
According to Azure, this suggests the higher-grade material may have been exploited by the historical miners.
Azure, which has a current A$27.75 million market cap, stated other notable drill results were 8.8m at 6.20g/t gold from 6.10m and 16.20 at 0.32% cobalt from 9.15m.
The company now plans to focus its geophysical exploration efforts on tracking sulphide-rich, high-grade mineralisation at the gold-cobalt land prospect.
Oposura zinc and lead project
Three months ago, the explorer identified new zinc and lead targets in Mexico at its Mina Blanca Ranch prospect, part of another of its Oposura project.
Last week, Azure reported final drill assays from Oposura East Zone, unveiling highlights such as 12.25m at 16.3% zinc and lead.
Another assay returned 3.20m at 20.9% zinc and lead, while a third featured 2.95m at 17.9% zinc and lead, and a fourth 2.5m at 27.2% zinc and lead.
Earlier this month, Azure also updated the market on its 100%-owned Alacran project, noting Minera Teck, which is earning a 51% interest, had said it would continue to undertake additional geological, geochemical and geophysical surveys in the June half of 2018.
Azure reported the Teck Resources subsidiary would chase those efforts with more drilling at Alacran in the December 2018 half.
Minera Teck is hoping to earn back a 51% stake in the project by sole-funding US$10 million (A$A 12.2 million) on exploration and making cash payments to Azure totalling US$500,000.
Azure securities rose 2% to A$0.245 by mid-day, after reaching a $0.275 high during morning trade.