• Spartan Resources doubles exploration target for Never Never to 1.6-1.9Moz gold
  • Target covers the ~400m vertical extension below the 952,900oz resource and is well supported by numerous drill intersections
  • Five drill rigs are currently operating at the Dalgaranga project, including three at Never Never


Special Report: Spartan Resources has recognised the immense potential to find more gold at the game-changing Never Never deposit with an updated exploration target of between 1.6-1.9Moz of contained gold.

The discovery of Never Never in early 2022 on the doorstep of the existing 2.5Mtpa carbon-in-leach processing facility at the company’s Dalgaranga project in WA’s Murchison region marked a massive change in fortune for Spartan Resources (ASX:SPR).

Resource infill and extensional drilling then enabled SPR to define a high-grade resource of 952,900oz @ 5.74g/t gold on the back of consistent +100 gram x metre intersections.

Subsequent work has expanded the mineralisation to ~830m vertical depth and ~1km down-dip of the current resource.

This included the deepest assay to date and the third best gram x metre intersection of 11.55m @ 36.77g/t gold, reinforcing the potential to add further high-grade ounces at depth.

All this has been achieved by total drill expenditure of $14.7 million on Never Never, a very low discovery cost of just $15.43 per resource ounce that compares very favourably with MinEx Consulting’s estimate average discovery cost for the global gold industry of US$62/oz ($93.70/oz) between 2009 and 2018.


The Never Never exploration target. Pic: Supplied (SPR)


New exploration target sets high bar for Never Never growth

SPR has now completed an updated exploration target of 8.1-9.9Mt grading between 5.8-6.7g/t gold, or between 1.6-1.9Moz of gold – inclusive of the existing resource – for Never Never.

This covers the ~400m vertical extension below the 952,900oz resource and is well supported by numerous drill intersections.

“In February last year, just before our $50 million recapitalisation at 10c, Spartan announced an exploration target for the recently outlined Never Never gold deposit of 600koz-1Moz at a grade range of 4.6-6.2g/t gold,” SPR managing director Simon Lawson says.

“Thanks to the tremendous success of our drilling programs in 2023, we completed two consecutive resource upgrades during the year, bringing the Never Never MRE from 303,100oz in early February 2023 to a phenomenal 952,900oz of contained gold by mid-December 2023.

“To more than treble the resource ounces of any high-grade deposit in 10 months is an incredible accomplishment.

“The new exploration target for the Never Never Gold Deposit announced here of 1.6-1.9Moz at a grade range of 5.8-6.7g/t is another solid target that incorporates the geological learnings, including the grade tenor, grade continuity, deposit width and structural data we have gathered since discovery, giving us a high degree of confidence in our ability to continue adding high-grade ounces to this incredible high-grade orebody.

“Given our track record of delivering high-grade gold resource ounces, as well as our growing knowledge and understanding of the Dalgaranga mineral system, I believe that this exploration target sets a high bar for ourselves, but one that can be achieved with solid focus and systematic delivery of results.”


Current and planned work

SPR has five rigs carrying out drilling at its Dalgaranga gold project.

These are targeting the high-grade Never Never deposit, as well as the nearby Sly Fox, Four Pillars and West Winds gold prospects along with other near-mine targets, mostly north of Never Never.

Three of the four diamond rigs are focused on Never Never with the fourth alternating between other targets. The RC rig is drilling both pre-collars for the diamond rigs and standalone holes on shallower target horizons.

SPR plans to carry out aircore drilling in April to follow-up on targets identified by ground gravity surveying of the Never Never gold deposit area, as well as the larger corridor to the north and north-west towards the Golden Wings tailings storage facility.

Updated resource estimates for Never Never and other resource drilling targets are planned for completion and release in the June quarter.




This article was developed in collaboration with Spartan 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.