VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 15, 2012) - Aurizon Mines Ltd. (TSX:ARZ)(NYSE Amex:AZK) is pleased to report additional results from the 2011-2012 drill program on Zone 123 at its Casa Berardi Mine in north-western Quebec.
"Casa Berardi continues to deliver excellent exploration results," said George Paspalas, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Some of the holes that we are releasing today were utilized in the December 31, 2011 resource update which included an 81% expansion of all measured and indicated resources at Casa Berardi. We are encouraged both by the holes encountered in the lower portion of the known Zone 123 resource block, indicating the potential to extend this zone, as well as the holes that have identified new additional stacked lenses to the main Zone 123. We are investing in infrastructure this year to extend the Mine out to allow for the future mining of Zone 123, and these results highlight the potential for new zones in this area, and also provide confirmation of the strategic intent to develop the lower levels of the mine."
The objective of the drill program is to improve the quality of the known Zone 123 resources and to delineate the extension of the mineralization. The program is focused 300 metres below the 810 metre level and 150 metres above the 550 metre level and covers an area of 300 metres along strike, 400 metres in width, and is approximately 1.0 kilometre east of the West Mine shaft.
Seventy seven (77) new holes have been completed. In addition to the drill holes included in the December 31, 2011 resource calculation, the program has identified three (3) new lenses outside the previously identified mineralized structures.
Fifty seven (57) mineralized intervals of the seventy seven (77) holes returned a metal factor (true width in metres x the gold grade in grams per tonne) of 10 or higher, which indicates lense continuity in the trend of the mineralized corridor. These drill holes are included in this release and are illustrated in the attached sketch.
Drilling highlights include (all results reported in true widths):
|Drill results located within the known resource block|
|Holes located in two distinct resource blocks (and integrated in the December 31, 2011 resource calculation)|
|- Hole-0395: 21.8 g/t gold over 12.2 metres||- Hole-0337: 8.9 g/t gold over 11.8 metres|
|Holes located in the deepest part of the resource block (and not integrated in the December 31, 2011 resource calculation)|
|- Hole-0388: 8.9 g/t gold over 18.7 metres||- Hole-0425: 19.0 g/t gold over 35.1 metres|
|- Hole-0422: 29.7 g/t gold over 11.8 metres|
|Drill results located outside of the known resource block|
|- Hole-0363: 7.8 g/t gold over 13.8 metres||- Hole-0406: 19.2 g/t gold over 8.1 metres|
|- Hole-0399: 9.4 g/t gold over 7.9 metres||- Hole-0410: 8.1 g/t gold over 8.5 metres|
|- Hole-0404: 10.6 g/t gold over 6.3 metres|
In Zone 123, gold mineralization occurs in quartz veins, cherty units and massive sulphide structures located between the South break to the east and the South break to the west in a volcanic-sedimentary bearing environment. This corridor covers more than 400 metres in width, and up to seven distinct clusters of lenses.
As of December 31, 2011, Zone 123 contained mineral reserves of 1,088,000 tonnes at a grade of 6.5 g/t gold, representing 225,700 ounces; indicated mineral resources of 279,000 tonnes at a grade of 6.3 g/t gold, representing 56,900 ounces and inferred mineral resources of 477,000 tonnes at a grade of 6.8 g/t gold, representing 104,100 ounces.
"The discovery of new mineralized systems within Zone 123 highlights the potential of the extension of the mineralization on strike and at depth, thereby increasing the possibility of finding additional clusters of mineralized lenses and the potentially to defining further high grade intersections within this structure," said Gilles Carrier P. Eng., Principal Exploration Geologist.
Based on these results, underground in-fill drilling will continue until year end using one or two drill rigs from the 810 metre exploration drift to define the down dip and the up-dip extensions of the zones. An updated mineral resource estimate will be completed as of December 31, 2012.
Quality Control and Qualified Person
Core assays are performed on core sawed in half, with standard fire assay procedures and atomic absorption finition. Certified reference material, duplicate and blanks are inserted in the sample sequence for quality control. Assay checking on pulp and coarse rejects are carried out on approximately 5% of samples. Additional information on Quality Assurance and Quality Control ("QA/QC"), can be found in the 'Technical Report on the Casa Berardi Mine', dated March 28, 2011 which can be found under Aurizon's profile on www.sedar.com. Primary exploration assaying was performed at the mine site laboratory and at Swastica lab in Ontario. The QA/QC program is a performed at ALS Chemex lab in Val d'Or.
Information of a scientific or technical nature included in this release has been prepared under the supervision of Gilles Carrier, P. Eng., Principal Exploration Geologist of Aurizon and Qualified Person under NI 43-101.
The attached two sketches show the position of the drill holes on the Casa Berardi property.
Aurizon is a gold producer with a growth strategy focused on developing its existing projects in the Abitibi region of north-western Quebec, one of the world's most favourable mining jurisdictions and prolific gold and base metal regions, and by increasing its asset base through accretive transactions. Aurizon shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "ARZ" and on the NYSE MKT under the symbol "AZK". Additional information on Aurizon and its properties is available on Aurizon's website at www.aurizon.com.
FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS AND INFORMATION
This news release contains "forward-looking statements" and "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable securities regulations in Canada and the United States (collectively, "forward-looking information"). The forward-looking information contained in this news release is made as of the date of this news release. Except as required under applicable securities legislation, the Company does not intend, and does not assume any obligation, to update this forward-looking information. Forward-looking information includes, but is not limited to, statements with respect to mineral reserve and mineral resource estimates, the, anticipated effect of completed drill results on the Casa Berardi project, planned work programs, strategic plans and expected outcomes. Often, but not always, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects, "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", forecasts", "intends", "anticipates", or "believes", or the negatives thereof or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might", or "will" be taken, occur or be achieved.
The forward-looking information contained in this news release is based on certain assumptions that the Company believes are reasonable, including, with respect to mineral reserve and resource estimates, the key assumptions and parameters on which such estimates are based, as set out in the technical report for the property, that the current price of and demand for gold will be sustained or will improve, the supply of gold will remain stable, that the general business and economic conditions will not change in a material adverse manner, that financing will be available if and when needed on reasonable terms and that the Company will not experience any material accident, labour dispute, or failure of plant or equipment.
However, forward-looking information involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking information. Such factors include, among others, conclusions of economic evaluations, the risk that actual results of exploration activities will be different than anticipated, that cost of labour, equipment or materials will increase more than expected, that the future price of gold will decline, that the Canadian dollar will strengthen against the U.S. dollar, that mineral resources and reserves are not as estimated, that actual costs or actual results of reclamation activities are greater than expected; that changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined may result in increased costs, of unexpected variations in mineral resources and reserves, grade or recovery rates, of failure of plant, equipment or processes to operate as anticipated, of accidents, labour disputes and other risks generally associated with mining, unanticipated delays in obtaining governmental approvals or financing or in the completion of development or construction activities, as well as those factors and other risks more fully described in Aurizon's Annual Information Form filed with the securities commission of all of the provinces and territories of Canada and in Aurizon's Annual Report on Form 40-F filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, which are available on Sedar at www.sedar.com and on Edgar at www.sec.gov/. Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking information, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results to not be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that forward-looking information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking information due to the inherent uncertainty thereof.
CAUTIONARY NOTE TO US READERS
As a Canadian reporting issuer, the Company is subject to rules, policies and regulations issued by Canadian regulatory authorities and is required to provide detailed information regarding its properties including mineralization, drilling, sampling and analysis, security of samples and mineral resource and mineral reserve estimates. In addition, as a Canadian reporting issuer, the Company is required to describe mineral resources associated with its properties utilizing Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum ("CIM") definitions of "indicated" or "inferred", which categories of resources are recognized by Canadian regulations but are not recognized by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC").
The SEC allows mining companies, in their filings with the SEC to disclose only those mineral deposits they can economically and legally extract or produce. Accordingly, information contained in this News Release regarding our mineral deposits may not be comparable to similar information made public by U.S. companies subject to the reporting and disclosure requirements under the United States federal securities laws and the rules and regulations of the Commission thereunder.
In particular, this News Release uses the term "indicated" resources. U.S. readers are cautioned that while that term is recognized and required by Canadian regulations, the SEC does not recognize it. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that any part or all of mineral deposits in this category will ever be converted into mineral reserves.
This News Release also uses the term "inferred" resources. U.S. readers are cautioned that while this term is recognized and required by Canadian regulations, the SEC does not recognize it. "Inferred resources" have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence, and great uncertainty as to their economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of an Inferred Mineral Resource will ever be upgraded to a higher category. Under Canadian rules, estimates of Inferred Mineral Resources may not form the basis of feasibility or pre-feasibility studies, except in rare cases. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that part or all of an inferred resource exists, or is economically or legally mineable.
|Integrated in the 2011 resource calculation|
|Not integrated in the 2011 resource calculation|
|Outside the resource blocks|
- Holes with an intercept lower than 3 grams per tonne or a metal factor (true width in metres x gold grade in grams per tonne) lower than 10 are: CBP-0304, CBP-0305,CBP-0325, CBP-0326, CBP-0327, CBP-0328, CBP-0329, CBP-0349,CBP-0364, CBP-0373, CBP-0376, CBP-0378, CBP-0379, CBP-0382, CBP-0389, CBP-0397, CBP-0398, CBP-0403, CBP-0409 and CBP-0415.
- The gap in sequence is due to holes having been drilled in other zones or the assays are pending.