Barry FitzGerald: Will DevEx deliver a trifecta for Tim Goyder?
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Goyder – a country boy from WA’s southwest who turned a love of prospecting into a since sold major drilling company business based in Kalgoorlie – is DevEx’s chairman and 19 per cent shareholder.
To complete a trifecta for Goyder, DevEx will need to notch up a major discovery in drilling programs at its gold and gold-copper projects in NSW’s Lachlan Fold Belt (LFB), or at its nickel-copper-platinum group elements (PGE) ground in WA’s Julimar region.
Chalice made the Julimar PGE-nickel-copper discovery on Perth’s doorstep earlier this year, and Liontown is growing its Kathleen Valley lithium project near Leinster in WA in to a world-scale deposit of the battery material.
Goyder owns 12 per cent of the $420m Chalice ($50m) and 18 per cent of the $256m Liontown ($46m).
Liontown is also exploring ground to the north of Julimar while plotting its move into production at Kathleen Valley when the lithium market inevitably takes off again.
DevEx — trading at 21.5c after an against-the-trend 5 per cent rise in last Friday’s market shakedown — is the odd one in the Goyder stable.
First up, drilling is underway at DevEx’s Main Ridge gold prospect in NSW, part of its broader Basin Creek project area.
A second drilling rig has been added to the campaign and first assay results are likely in the next three to four weeks.
DevEx reckons it is on to a potentially large epithermal or porphyry gold system.
Main Ridge is a 3.5km-long gold-in-soil anomaly where previous surface rock chip sampling returned grades of up to 8 grams of gold a tonne.
DevEx’s initial 14-hole drilling program will test several high-priority targets within the broader gold system.
Main Ridge has only ever been lightly explored. The oil company Shell had a crack back in the early 1980s, when there was a short-lived fashion for the oil companies to use their bumper cashflows at the time to diversify into minerals.
But Shell’s drill holes were actually directed away from the soil anomaly.
The DevEx program puts that straight. And because of the scale of the anomaly, there is bound to be a lot of interest in the program.
DevEx is also planning a drilling program in coming weeks at its Junee copper-gold porphyry project near Gundagai, about 60km to the northwest of the Basin Creek project area.
It has been busy refining three drill-ready targets at Junee – Riversdale North, Billabong Creek and Nangus Road.
Like the Basin Creek program, the Junee program has the potential to excite. The same goes for DevEx’s Julimar hunt where it was an early mover following the success by fellow Goyder company Chalice.
It has got a big ground position covering the same prospective rocks to the northwest of the Julimar discovery, and to the southeast of Cassini’s (ASX:CZI) promising Yarawindah block.
In a neat bit of work, DevEx has worked up the Sovereign prospect as a high-priority target by re-assaying historical bauxite exploration drill holes.
The geochemical results, and surface rock chip samples, identified elevated nickel, copper and chromium results coincident with the known Sovereign magnetic complex.
Drill targets are to be further refined with an airborne electromagnetic survey, with drilling to follow.
It’s another one to watch and might just yet serve up Goyder, a 40-year veteran of the exploration game, a well-deserved trifecta of discoveries.