• Pacgold may have hit the upper levels of a big gold system in Queensland
  • Santa Fe hunts for Gonneville lookalikes at newly acquired project
  • eMetals (rare earths), Big River (gold), and Estrella (nickel) up on no news

Here are the biggest small cap resources winners in early trade, Wednesday January 12.

 

PACGOLD (ASX:PGO)

There are strong signs PGO has hit the upper levels of a large-scale, high-grade gold system “with gold grades and widths continuing to increase as drilling transitions deeper into the system”, it says.

Impressive hits like 17m at 9.3g/t gold have expanded the high-grade zone below/along strike of the historical open pit at PGO’s ‘Alice River’ project in Queensland.

“This excellent result in drill hole ARDH026 represents a pivotal advance for our Alice River Project, providing compelling indications we have just intersected the top of a large, high-grade gold system only 100m below surface,” managing director Tony Schreck says.

“We have achieved rapid success applying the gold mineralisation model based on the tier-1 Donlin gold deposit in Alaska, which suggested potential higher grades as we transition deeper into the system.”

Results are pending for seven drill holes completed over 250m strike, targeting the zone between 100m to 320m below surface.

All seven holes intersected broad zones of alteration and veining associated with the target, including a 1m interval (ARDH027) with strongly disseminated visible gold, PGO says.

 

Strong visible gold (over 50 individual grains) noted within a 1m interval (ARDH027 217-218m).

This red-hot $27m market cap stock is up 184% on its July 2021 IPO price of 25c per share. It had $4.6m in the bank at the end of September.

 

EMETALS (ASX:EMT)

(Up on no news)

In November, the micro-cap acquired a 469sqkm project prospective for ionic clay (IAC) rare earths in the Eucla Basin of WA.

IAC deposits are typically found in southern China and are commonly considered to be some of the cheapest and most readily accessible sources of heavy rare earths, as well as making up a significant percentage of the world’s total output.

Good timing, with prices near decade highs.

The Salmon Gums acquisition is close to EMT’s existing ‘Cowlinya’ REE project. It is also a stone’s throw from recent IAC discoveries made by Mount Ridley Mines (ASX:MRD) (~35km away) and Salazar Gold (~20km away).

EMT hasn’t announced a detailed exploration plan for early 2022, which we imagine is probs coming soon.

The $10m market cap stock had $426,000 in the bank at the end of September, and subsequently raised $4.375m at $0.0125 per share.

 

BIG RIVER GOLD (ASX:BRV)

(Up on no news)

Finding the money to build BRV’s 2.43moz Borborema Gold project in Brazil has been tough.

A DFS released in 2019 envisaged a $US99m ($144m) capex, stage 1 mine life of 10.2 years, producing an average 71,250oz of gold a year from a single open pit.

Based on a $US1,400/oz gold price (currently $US1,820/oz), BRV estimated a decent post-tax net present value (NPV) of $US203m and an internal rate of return (IRR) of 41.8 per cent.

Still, a decent financing deal was not forthcoming.

The company is now looking to double planned production to improve project economics.

Part of this work includes an extensional drilling program targeting the high-grade down plunge and below pit extensions to about 400m.

BRV is confident this drilling — which kicked off late December — will extend mineralisation down dip at least 100m and across 1.2km of strike.

The $60m market cap stock is up 20% over the past month. It had $17.3m in the bank at the end of September.

 

SANTA FE MINERALS (ASX:SFM)

The explorer recently signed a deal to earn into the early stage ‘Mt Murray’ project in WA, where it is hunting a nickel-copper-PGE deposit à la Chalice Mining’s (ASX:CHN) Gonneville.

It includes a 4.2km x 1.2km magnetic high zone considered to represent a mafic-ultramafic intrusive package prospective for nickel-copper-PGEs:

This large target is mostly concealed beneath shallow sandplain, SFM says.

Results from a surface sampling program at ‘El Paso’, completed close to a historic anomalous nickel and copper rock sample, are pending.

The $14.2m market cap stock is up 77% over the past month. It had $3.25m in the bank at the end of September.

 

ESTRELLA RESOURCES (ASX:ESR)

(Up on no news)

In 2020, a spectacular intersection at the flagship Carr Boyd project in WA pushed ESR into #5 spot on Stockhead’s Best Performing Resources Stocks of 2020.

While the deposit/s grew, the explorer was not able to maintain share price momentum in 2021 – an issue the company tackled in a letter to investors last week.

“I would also like to address our obvious dissatisfaction with the company share price, which we believe does not reflect the significant value of our assets and growth prospects for 2022,” chairman Les Pereira says.

“I would like to note that looking at recent register movements it appears this downwards pressure is mostly behind us.

“As I said last year, the expiring of the June 2021 listed $0.05 options and the capital that could be raised from the options being converted was always going to be a potential influence on the share price.

“Understanding this situation, the company was proactive in securing Henslow to underwrite the option conversion, guaranteeing exploration funds would be received. As a result, the company raised $11 million.

“This substantial funding has allowed Estrella to continue its extensive drilling campaign and uncover massive nickel-copper sulphides at the Carr Boyd Nickel Project.”

ESR now has an RC rig and a diamond core rig on site, Pereira says.

“The diamond rig will be working continuously with the RC rig operating on single shift so hopefully we will start to see some interesting results coming in from this exploration program as soon as available,” he says.

“Results from the assay labs submitted last year are still taking some time to come back but we will also report on those as soon as these are received.”