Thunder Bay, Ontario--(Newsfile Corp. - September 6, 2023) - Benton Resources Inc. (TSXV: BEX) ("Benton") and Sokoman Minerals Corp. (TSXV: SIC) (OTCQB: SICNF) ("Sokoman") together, (the "Alliance") is pleased to announce that it has received further results from the Phase 4 diamond drilling program completed at the Kraken Lithium swarm. To date, a total of 10,095 m of drilling has been completed in four phases at the main discovery areas, as well as an additional 522 m in six holes at the Hydra Dyke, 10 km to the northeast. Most of the Phase 4 drilling was completed in the East Dyke and Killick Dyke areas where the Alliance previously announced 2022 and 2023 drilling returned up to 1.04% Li2O over 15.23 m in GH-22-27, 1.08% Li2O over 9.50 m in GH-22-26, 1.22% Li2O over 13.37 m in GH-23-45, 0.81% Li2O over 21.00 m, and 0.99% Li2O over 10.16 m in GH-23-46. The latest drill program has expanded the dyke system to the south and has intersected a new dyke to the east of Killick, which requires further testing. Referred to as Killick East, this new dyke was intersected in drill holes GH-23-47, GH-23-56, and GH-23-59 over a 100 m strike length and returned values up to 1.54 m @ 0.68% Li2O in hole GH-23-56. The Killick Dyke system remains open to the north and at depth. The Alliance is currently planning a Phase 5 program to begin in late September or early fall, 2023. The Phase 5 program will test numerous new targets generated from current mapping and channel sampling as well as the main Kraken Dyke swarm area (including Kraken West and Kraken North) and drilling to expand the East Dyke and Killick Dyke areas.
Steve Stares, President and CEO of Benton Resources Inc. said: "Lithium-rich pegmatite dykes are highly variable and complex, but our approach of using multiple exploration techniques continues to expand the target zone of this massive, still early-stage pegmatite field. Prospecting, soil sampling, trenching, channel sampling, and diamond drilling all continue to provide essential data and encourage us to continue to the next phase of the work, including some excellent drill targets for the Phase 5 program."
Table 1 - Phase 4 Diamond Drill Results
|Kraken Phase 4 Drilling Highlights - Golden Hope Project|
|Hole #||Target Area||From||To||Length||Li2O %||Ta2O5 %|
|GH-23-49, 55, 58, 60 and 61 all intersected multiple dykes with|
|anomalous Lithium values >0.1% Li2O|
Hydra Prospect Drilling
The Alliance is also pleased to announce that it has received significant results from the six-hole (522 m) reconnaissance diamond drilling program recently completed on the Hydra (cesium/lithium/tantalum) target 10 km northeast of the Killick Dyke.
Initial drilling on the Hydra Dyke was successful in intersecting cesium-lithium-rubidium-tantalum mineralization in four of the six holes completed. The drilling has confirmed the continuation of mineralization at depth and along strike to the north for approximately 100 m. Highlights of the Phase 1 drilling include:
- 13.55 m grading 0.14% Cs2O from 4.85-18.4 m including 1.22 m grading 0.51% Cs2O from 13.45 m - 14.17 m (Hole HY-23-01)
Additional work completed on the Hydra Dyke includes detailed channel sampling at the discovery outcrop (44 samples) and geological mapping. The sections sampled are mineralogically similar to the previous surface sampling and in recent drilling. The best results from channel sampling in 2022 at Hydra averaged 8.76% Cs2O, 0.41% Li2O, 0.025% Ta2O5, and 0.33% Rb2O over a 1.2 m channel cut (see news release December 1, 2022). Additional results will be reported as received and after compilation in the coming weeks. The Alliance is planning further follow-up work including deeper drilling and testing the dyke along strike to the south. To date, the Hydra Dyke has only been tested to the north of the discovery outcrop.
Table 2 - Phase 1 Diamond Drill Results - Hydra Prospect
|2023 Phase 1 Diamond Drilling - Hydra Prospect - Golden Hope Project|
|Hole #||From||To||Length||Cs2O %||Li2O %||Rb2O %||Ta2O5 %|
|hole drilled underneath dip of dyke|
Kraken Area Channel Sampling
The Alliance has completed a series of channel cut samples across numerous newly discovered, as well as known, dykes exposed during previous and ongoing prospecting and trenching activities at Golden Hope. The most significant are newly exposed dykes to the west and north of the Kraken Discovery area. A number of these exposures have yet to be drill tested and will be tested as part of the upcoming Phase 5 diamond drilling program later this fall. In addition, channel sampling was carried out over known dykes trenched earlier this year or late 2022. All channel results are pending.
A total of 186 channel samples have been collected and most are currently being analyzed as sampling continues. Most samples were channeled across well-mineralized spodumene-bearing pegmatite dykes and sample lengths range from 0.35 m to 1.0 m, with an average of approximately 0.8 m. Channel samples were collected (from west to east) from the following areas:
1% Trench - 10 channel samples ranging from 0.6 m to 1.0 m in length were collected where 2022 prospecting sampling returned a grab sample assaying 1.11% Li2O to the west of the Kraken Discovery area. All pegmatite dyke channel samples contained significant spodumene and the dyke will be drill tested in the Phase 5 program.
Colin's Turn Trench - 13 channel samples ranging from 0.5 m to 1.0 m in length were collected on the west end of the Kraken North Dyke as currently exposed. Two continuous channel cuts sampled spodumene mineralization over 2.0 m in width and are similar to that in the dyke further east. Drilling is planned for this location in the Phase 5 program.
Kraken North - 58 channel samples ranging from 0.35 m to 1.0 m in length were collected in four separate trenched exposures of the Kraken North Dyke over a strike length of 150 m. All areas contain spodumene-bearing pegmatite dykes that assayed up to 2.17% Li2O in earlier grab sampling. Only one drill hole has tested one part of this dyke system with assays of 16.2 m @ 0.43% Li2O including 1.8 m @ 1.10% Li2O in hole GH-22-05. Several drill holes are planned for this target in the Phase 5 program.
Kraken Northeast - 38 channel samples ranging from 0.6 m to 1.0 m in length were collected from a new trench excavated near the site of drillhole GH-22-06 where assays demonstrated 1.5 m @ 0.32% Li2O from 3.5 to 5.0 m down the hole before it was lost at 38 m. Recent mapping and channel sampling indicate spodumene mineralization present in multiple exposures at the new trench. Additional drilling is warranted and is planned for the Phase 5 program.
East Dyke - 13 channel samples ranging from 0.45 m to 1.0 m in length were collected at the East Dyke surface exposure. Pegmatite samples contained significant medium- to coarse-grained spodumene similar to that encountered in drilling (e.g., 1.00% Li2O over 5.5 m in hole GH-22-08). This channel sampling will assist in the 3D interpretation of the East Dyke and Killick Dyke zones.
Hockey Stick Trench - 19 channel samples ranging from 0.70 m to 1.0 m in length were collected at the Hockey Stick Trench. The pegmatite dyke exposed in the trench is mineralogically similar to other lithium-bearing dykes nearby and along strike. Sample analysis will assist staff in vectoring toward lithium-rich parts of the dyke system.
Northeast Dyke - 48 channel samples ranging from 0.55 m to 1.0 m in length were collected in two separate trenches in this area. Pegmatite dykes sampled contained spodumene in several sections of the exposures. Two drill holes GH-22-23 and GH-22-24 were completed here in 2022 and yielded anomalous Li2O. Further evaluation of the dykes is warranted.
The Alliance is continuing to outline significant lithium in soil targets as part of its property-scale program covering the greater than 20 km corridor of prospective geology to the NE and SW. Line spacing ranges from 200 m to 500 m in recon areas to 100 m in detailed areas adjacent to known prospective dykes (see Map 3 below). Results continue to match those received from the initial discovery area where lithium values ranged from 75 to 200 ppm (Li) and are considered significant. These targets will be subject to field follow-up work including prospecting and till sampling, and where warranted, diamond drilling this fall. To date in 2023, a total of 2856, B-Horizon soil samples have been collected and processed at Eastern Analytical Ltd. in Springdale NL for lithium, tantalum, rubidium, and tin analysis. The results for approximately 900 soils remain pending and include lines completed to the west of all known lithium occurrences to date, lines to the northeast of the main dyke swarm, and lines completed at the Hydra Dyke area (detailed below):
Kraken West - Data from 15 lines at 100 m spacing have been compiled at Kraken West extending soil coverage 1.6 km west of previously known spodumene pegmatite dykes. Several anomaly clusters are evident in the new soil data, which will be subject to immediate follow-up evaluation.
Kraken Northeast - Data from eight, 100 m - 200 m spaced lines have been received from the Killick East Dyke to the Northeast Dyke areas. These lines provided infill sampling with positive results near known spodumene dykes, confirming the effectiveness of the soil sampling, in addition to extending anomalous Li in soils 450 m to the northeast of known spodumene dykes.
Triangle Pond - 13 soil lines spaced 200 m - 500 m apart have now been received from the Triangle Pond to Grandy's Brook area that outline at least two significant parallel NE-SW trending Li-Ta anomalies over 4.5 km in length. Initial observations confirm the presence of multiple pegmatite dykes in the areas of the soil anomalies with work ongoing to help vector within the system toward lithium-bearing phases. Top Pond Ridge - eight soil lines spaced 500 m apart have been completed with data received for the Top Pond Ridge area. Lithium in soil anomalies is evident on six of these lines and exhibits broad multi-station responses continuous over a 2.5 km strike length. Initial observations confirm the presence of multiple pegmatite dyke occurrences, and some sampling has been completed.
Hydra - A new soil grid with 500 m spaced soil sampling lines was recently initiated at the Hydra Dyke area. A small, detailed orientation soil grid was completed near the known cesium-lithium-rubidium-tantalum dyke occurrence in the spring of 2023 with positive results (soils to 996 ppm Li, 105 ppm Nb and 141 ppm Ta near the Hydra Dyke). Initial samples collected from the new larger grid are pending analysis and sampling is ongoing.
Partial results have been received from the ongoing prospecting program underway at Golden Hope. Much of the prospecting activity has focused on the follow-up of soil geochemistry results, which have identified pegmatite dykes in each new anomaly area, as described above. The most significant result to date is from the west Kraken area where spodumene-bearing float and outcrop, as yet untested by diamond drilling, have been uncovered and where preliminary assays from grab samples have returned up to 0.64% Li2O within open-ended soil geochemical anomalies. Large blocks of spodumene bearing float uncovered between the Killick and West Kraken zones, which appear to represent a new dyke(s), have returned values up to 0.58% Li2O and are untested by diamond drilling. This area will be further evaluated in preparation for Phase 5 drilling targeting.
Prospecting results from selected soil geochemical anomalies have returned strongly elevated beryllium (Be to 1,476 ppm) and tantalum (Ta to 507 ppm) enriched dykes which are part of the larger family of Lithium/Cesium/Tantalum (LCT Type) dykes. Vectoring within the LCT dyke systems will assist in the discovery of lithium-bearing pegmatites. Numerous soil geochemical anomalies remain to be investigated and soil sampling activities are continuing.
Rock and core samples are submitted to SGS Canada Inc. in Grand Falls-Windsor, Newfoundland for preparation and then sent to the SGS Canada Inc. analytical laboratory in Burnaby, British Colombia for analysis. All samples were acquired by hand (rocks) or saw-cut (channels/drill core) and delivered, by Benton/Sokoman personnel, in sealed bags, to the Grand Falls-Windsor prep lab of SGS, which is an accredited assay lab that conforms to the requirements of ISO/IEC 17025. Samples are analyzed using SGS's GS_IMS91A50 method that delivers a 56-element package utilizing sodium peroxide fusion, ICP-AES, and ICP-MS analytical techniques. All reported assays are uncut. Soil samples were collected by Sokoman/Benton personnel utilizing a standard Dutch-auger, collecting B Horizon soil, where possible. Where B was not present, the soil horizon or type was noted. Soil samples were sent to Eastern Analytical Ltd., in Springdale, NL, for Li, Ta, Sn, and Nb analyses by four-acid digestion, analyzed by ICP-OES. Eastern Analytical Ltd. achieved ISO 17025 accreditation in February 2014 (for more details on the scope of accreditation visit the CALA website).
This news release has been reviewed and approved by Stephen House, P.Geo., VP Exploration for Benton Resources Inc., and Timothy Froude, P.Geo., President and CEO of Sokoman Minerals Corp., both 'Qualified Persons' under National Instrument 43-101.
About Benton Resources Inc.
Benton Resources Inc. is a well-funded mineral exploration company listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol BEX. Following a project generation business model, Benton has a diversified, highly prospective property portfolio of Gold, Silver, Nickel, Copper, Platinum Group Elements, and most recently Lithium and Cesium assets. In addition, it currently holds large equity positions in other mineral exploration companies that are advancing high-quality assets. Whenever possible, BEX retains net smelter return (NSR) royalties with potential long-term cash flow.
Benton also entered into a 50/50 strategic alliance with Sokoman Minerals Inc. (TSXV: SIC) through three large-scale joint-venture properties including Grey River Gold, Golden Hope, and Kepenkeck in Newfoundland.
About Sokoman Minerals Corp.
Sokoman Minerals Corp. is a discovery-oriented company with projects in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. The company's primary focus is its portfolio of gold projects: flagship, 100%-owned Moosehead, Crippleback Lake, and East Alder (optioned to Canterra Minerals Corporation) along the Central Newfoundland Gold Belt, and the district-scale Fleur de Lys project near Baie Verte in northwestern Newfoundland, that is targeting Dalradian-type orogenic gold mineralization similar to the Curraghinalt and Cavanacaw deposits in Northern Ireland, and Cononish in Scotland. The company also entered into a strategic alliance with Benton Resources Inc. through three large-scale joint-venture properties including Grey River Gold, Golden Hope, and Kepenkeck in Newfoundland. Sokoman now controls independently and through the Benton alliance over 150,000 hectares (>6,000 claims - 1,500 sq. km), making it one of the largest landholders in Newfoundland, Canada's newest and rapidly emerging gold districts. The company also retains an interest in an early-stage antimony/gold project (Startrek) in Newfoundland, optioned to Thunder Gold Corp (formerly White Metal Resources Inc.), and in Labrador, the Company has a 100% interest in the Iron Horse (Fe) project that has Direct Shipping Ore (DSO) potential.
For further information, please contact:
Benton Resources Inc.
Stephen Stares, President & CEO
Sokoman Minerals Corp.
Timothy Froude, P.Geo., President & CEO
CHF Capital Markets
Cathy Hume, CEO
Phone: 416-868-1079 x 251
THE TSX VENTURE EXCHANGE HAS NOT REVIEWED AND DOES NOT ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE ADEQUACY OR ACCURACY OF THIS RELEASE.
The information contained herein contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of applicable securities legislation. Forward-looking statements relate to information that is based on assumptions of management, forecasts of future results, and estimates of amounts not yet determinable. Any statements that express predictions, expectations, beliefs, plans, projections, objectives, assumptions or future events or performance are not statements of historical fact and may be "forward-looking statements."
Forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties which could cause actual events or results to differ from those reflected in the forward-looking statements, including, without limitation: risks related to failure to obtain adequate financing on a timely basis and on acceptable terms; risks related to the outcome of legal proceedings; political and regulatory risks associated with mining and exploration; risks related to the maintenance of stock exchange listings; risks related to environmental regulation and liability; the potential for delays in exploration or development activities or the completion of feasibility studies; the uncertainty of profitability; risks and uncertainties relating to the interpretation of drill results, the geology, grade and continuity of mineral deposits; risks related to the inherent uncertainty of production and cost estimates and the potential for unexpected costs and expenses; results of prefeasibility and feasibility studies, and the possibility that future exploration, development or mining results will not be consistent with the Alliance's expectations; risks related to gold price and other commodity price fluctuations; and other risks and uncertainties related to the Alliance's prospects, properties and business detailed elsewhere in the Alliance's disclosure record. Should one or more of these risks and uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described in forward-looking statements. Investors are cautioned against attributing undue certainty to forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date hereof and the Alliance does not assume any obligation to update or revise them to reflect new events or circumstances. Actual events or results could differ materially from the Alliance's expectations or projections.
Map 1 - East Dyke and Killick Dyke Area Drill Plan - Golden Hope JV
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Map 2 - Hydra Drill Plan - Golden Hope JV
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Map 3 - Soil Sampling Program - Golden Hope JV
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