Barry FitzGerald: It’s Navarre Minerals’ turn to see what the drill pulls up at Glenlyle
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Garimpeiro’s diary tells him that any day now, Victorian explorer Navarre Minerals (ASX:NML) will announce latest drilling results from its Glenlyle epithermal gold-silver prospect in the shadows of the Grampians mountain range.
The results could be worth watching out for as success at Glenlyle – a short drive from the old gold mining town of Ararat where the steaks at the Blue Duck pub in Barkly Street are so big they bend – will add another leg to the Navarre story.
Navarre already has a crowded story book thanks to its Victorian gold hunt, either in and around Stawell, Ararat and St Arnaud, or north of the historic 22m oz Bendigo goldfield, the latter in a joint at the Tandarra project with the now 11% Gina Rinehart-owned Catalyst Metals (CYL), a $174m company.
As PAC Partners put it in a recent research note, Navarre is the proverbial kid in the candy shop thanks to its large number of potential company-making projects.
Glenlyle is one of those but it is the unusual one in the bunch.
That’s because drilling last year at the previously lightly explored project elevated its status as an epithermal gold-silver play, with the mineralisation possibly sitting over the top of a deeper buried porphyry copper-gold target.
That’s kind of interesting because Glenlyle sits in the same volcanic arc that hosts Stavely Minerals’ (ASX:SVY) Thursday’s Gossan porphyry copper-gold project, some 25km to the south. Earlier this month Stavely reported a “whopper” porphyry-related copper-gold intersection from surface to a depth of 902m.
The low-grade intersection included higher-grade sections and increased confidence that Stavely’s next drill holes will test the main prize at Thursday’s Gossan – the potential for a big copper-gold porphyry system at depth.
Stavely is now a $52m company with testing of the main prize at Thursday’s Gossan to come. Its market value reflects how the market can get excited about potential porphyry copper-gold discoveries where the scale of mineralisation can be measured in the billions of tonnes.
While it is very early days at Glenlyle in comparison, it can be argued that there is nothing in Navarre’s $33m market value – it has been trading at 9.4c a share – for its newfound epithermal/porphyry leg at the property anyway.
Drilling there last year in Navarre’s maiden program returned 46m at 8.1g/t silver from 53m, including a 1m intersection grading 252g/t silver, 3.1g/t gold, 0.3% lead and 0.3 zinc from 98m to the end of the hole.
Apart from the possibility that the mineralisation has telescoped up from a deeper buried porphyry, geophysical work by Navarre and previous explorers has also given encouragement to the deeper buried porphyry concept.
It’s best to wait for the latest drill results from the testing of the shallow epithermal mineralisation before getting too excited about Glenlyle. Besides, even assuming some good news with the pending results, it will still be very early days, with drill testing of the deeper porphyry potential a long way off.
Still, Navarre has more than enough on the gold front to hold the attention of investors.
Strong news flow is promised in the months ahead, with drilling at the Irvine project to the south of the Stawell gold mine (operated on behalf of the Smorgon family and Chinese interests by the private equity firm, Arete) and ongoing programs at Langi Logan (on trend from Stawell/Irvine), Tandarra, and St Arnaud.
Interest in Victoria’s high-grade gold potential generally has been heightened by Kirkland Lake’s super high-grade Swan Zone discovery at Fosterville near Bendigo, and Arete’s restart of the Stawell mine earlier this year.
PAC Partners noted in its research report that until Navarre has a resource under its belt (Irvine and Tandarra are the most advanced on that score) it is difficult to value the company.
It nevertheless derived a 14c a share price target based on a peer comparison. That was before the latest results from Glenlyle were in.