The first assays from Brightstar Resources’ 12,000m drilling campaign at its Cork Tree Well gold deposit have stunned with high grade nickel adding to the bounty for the junior explorer.

It is not uncommon to find nickel in those climes. Cork Tree Well and the broader Brightstar gold project is located in the Laverton mining district.

That locale has played host to some major nickel finds in recent times like Duketon Mining’s Rosie deposit and Poseidon Nickel’s Mt Windarra mine, the focus of the Poseidon rush that launched the modern stock market.

Brightstar acknowledged the nickel hits were unexpected, only found in 1m samples conducted every 20m to find pathfinder elements for gold mineralisation.

But the grades were substantial, including 1m at 1.64% from 45m, 1m at 1.66% from 64m, 1m at 1.6% from 41m and 1m at 1.99% from 61m.

Gold grades were nothing to sneeze at either, conforming closely with the geological model at the 237,000oz Cork Tree Well deposit.

Best results from the first 26 holes of the program to be assayed included:

  • 12m at 4.25g/t Au from 131m (BTRRC031)
  • 11m at 3.12g/t Au from 102m (BTRRC024)
  • 7m at 3.5g/t Au from 176m (BTRRC032)
  • 1m at 20.3g/t Au from 23m (BTRRC072); and,
  • 5m at 2.83g/t Au from 100m (BTRRC013).

Drilling program going to plan for Brightstar

Needless to say those are just the sort of results Brightstar management were looking for.

Managing director Bill Hobba said 80 holes of the program have been completed to date in its efforts to infill and extend Cork Tree Well’s resource of 237,000oz at 1.9g/t gold.

Another 10 remain with assays still pending for 59 holes, ensuring plenty of news flow in the coming weeks.

“The assay results reported are from the first 26 holes and it is pleasing to see significant intercepts from 18 holes and the correlation between the gold results returned and the JORC resource model,” Hobba said.

“The ore body is showing good continuity at depth and along strike, which bodes well for further JORC resource growth and ultimately conversion to JORC reserves for future mining studies at Cork Tree Well.

“Additionally, the material nickel mineralisation was returned in the multi-element analyses which was only sampled every 20 metres.

“With multiple intercepts in the same holes, we are excited to assay the intervals in-between, as this could represent potentially significant accumulations of nickel mineralisation in a belt known to host significant nickel ore bodies like Rosie (Duketon Mining Ltd) and Mt Windarra (Poseidon Nickel Ltd).”

What’s next? 

Brightstar has engaged independent experts to carry out a review of Cork Tree Well’s nickel potential, while the final 10 holes of the 12,000m program are drilled.

Once the drilling campaign is done, the RC rig undertaking it will likely be moved to one of Brightstar’s other project areas, where programs of work are in place for after the Cork Tree Well program.

The company says it will update the market once this exploration programme is confirmed.

Brightstar controls more than 450,000oz of gold resources within a 60km radius of its Brightstar processing plant.

While Cork Tree Well is currently the most substantial deposit in its portfolio, the company also boasts the 106,000oz Alpha deposit (1.45Mt at 2.3g/t) and the plant in situ 102,000oz Beta project (1.88Mt at 1.7g/t) as well as a number of other tenements around the Laverton gold district.




This article was developed in collaboration with Brightstar Resources, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.