Edmonton – April 14th, 2020 – Benchmark Metals Inc. (the “Company” or “Benchmark“) (TSX-V: BNCH) (OTCQB: CYRTF) (WKN: A2JM2X) – is pleased to announce that a shipment of representative drill core samples collected from multiple gold-silver zones (Cliff Creek, Duke’s Ridge and Amethyst Gold Breccia or “AGB” zones) at the Lawyers Gold-Silver Project has been received in Vancouver, BC. These samples were selected to investigate the metallurgical characteristics of the mineralization for potential bulk-tonnage mining. This work will expand upon historical metallurgical studies that focused on the high-grade (>10 gram per tonne [g/t]) material from underground historical mining. The historical metallurgical recoveries of the high grade gold-silver mineralization mined at the Lawyers property during the period 1989-1992, averaged 93% for gold (Au) and 78% for silver (Ag) (Lane et al., 2018). Benchmark’s flagship Lawyers gold-silver project is located in the Golden Horseshoe of north-central British Columbia, Canada
John Williamson, CEO, commented, “The expanded metallurgical program dovetails with our aggressive 2020 exploration and drilling program. It will assist in defining drill locations, density and spacing to achieve a NI43-101 Mineral Resource Estimate. This work is an initial step in designing process flowsheets, potential recoveries, initial capital costs and operating costs for a future Preliminary Economic Assessment”.
The expanded metallurgical program will focus on characterizing the metallurgical properties for the bulk tonnage gold-silver mineralization at three targets, as well as confirming historical data of related higher grade zones within the bulk-tonnage targets. The testing techniques will comprise chemical and mineralogical analysis, comminution testing along with standard recovery techniques including gravity separation, sulphide froth flotation and various cyanidation testing. From this, a conceptual flowsheet will be established along with projected precious metal recoveries. Optimum process conditions including grind, retention times, and reagent requirements will be investigated for the various mineralized zones. The test work will be conducted on extended continuous intervals of drill core rejects obtained primarily from the 2019 exploration program. A total of 416 core sample rejects totaling approximately 975 kilograms of material have been received at the laboratory. This material will be tested to confirm the high-grade historical results and to provide metallurgical composites for the testing of potential open-pit, bulk-tonnage targets.
Upon completion of the 2020 exploration and 50,000 metre drill program, further metallurgical studies will refine the data from the multiple deposits present at the Lawyers gold-silver project. This initial expanded metallurgical program will better enable composite selection from the 2020 drilling to more closely represent potential future bulk tonnage mining grades. These results will flow into a future Preliminary Economic Assessment.
Benchmark has engaged Frank Wright, P.Eng., of F. Wright Consulting Inc., of Delta, BC to oversee the metallurgical program. Mr. Wright has over 30 years of operating and consulting experience in the fields of mineral processing and hydrometallurgy. His career has spanned 20 years as a qualified independent professional engineer managing projects similar to Lawyers, worldwide. His work to date has included the oversight of test programs leading to selected process development, the related technical reporting and supervision of detailed engineering, as well as project commissioning and trouble shooting.
The metallurgical test work will be conducted by Bureau Veritas Minerals (BV) – Metallurgical Division laboratories of Richmond, BC. BV has prior experience with the Lawyers Project, and is a globally recognized and certified testing facility with customers ranging from small independent operators to large multi-national mining firms and consultants.
Historical Gold-Silver Recoveries
The historical metallurgical recoveries of the high-grade gold-silver mineralization mined at the Lawyers property during the period 1989-1992 averaged 93% for gold (Au) and 78% for silver (Ag). These historical mining recoveries are considered good and provide a preliminary indication that metallurgical characteristics for the Lawyers low-sulphidation epithermal deposits are suitable for standard processing techniques, which should provide acceptable rates of metals recovery (Lane et al., 2018).
Limited metallurgical testing was performed in 2011 by BV on high-grade rock samples from mine site material at the Cliff Creek zone (BV Project 1106711 report “Metallurgical Testing of Samples from the Mountainside Exploration Management Inc., Cliff Creek Mine Gold Project of central BC”, April 27, 2012). The study results indicate that a sample with a head grade of 13.1 g/t Au and 765 g/t Ag at a primary grind of P80 108 microns was amenable to sulphide flotation yielding a sulphide concentrate containing 318 g/t Au and 18,500 g/t Ag at recoveries of 88.8% Au and 83.1% Ag .
Quality Assurance and Control
The sampling program was undertaken by Company personnel under the direction of Rob L’Heureux, P.Geol. A secure chain of custody is maintained in transporting and storing of all samples. Gold was assayed using a fire assay with atomic emission spectrometry and gravimetric finish when required (+10 g/t Au). Analysis by four acid digestion with 48 element ICP-MS analysis was conducted on all samples with silver and base metal over-limits being re-analyzed by atomic absorption or emission spectrometry.
The technical content of this news release has been reviewed and approved by Michael Dufresne,
M.Sc., P.Geol., P.Geo., a qualified person as defined by National Instrument 43-101.
Grant of Options
Benchmark advises that it has granted incentive stock options to various directors, officers and consultants to purchase up to 6.4 million common shares exercisable on or before April 14, 2025 at a price of $0.30 per share. In addition, incentive stock options have been granted to consultants to purchase up to a further 200,000 common shares exercisable on or before April 14, 2021 at a price of $0.30 per share.
About Benchmark Metals Inc.
Benchmark is a Canadian mineral exploration company with its common shares listed for trading on the TSX Venture Exchange in Canada, the OTCQB Venture Market in the United States, and the Tradegate Exchange in Europe. Benchmark is managed by proven resource sector professionals, who have a track record of advancing exploration projects from grassroots scenarios through to production.
ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
s/ “John Williamson”
John Williamson, Chief Executive Officer
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