TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 20, 2013) - CHAMPION IRON MINES LIMITED (CHM.TO)(CPMNF)(P02.F) ("Champion", or the "Company") is pleased to provide results from remaining 2012 drill holes completed in the West Deposit area of the Consolidated Fire Lake North ("CFLN") Project which were not available for the recently announced Mineral Resource Estimate ("MRE") Update and Preliminary Feasibility Study ("PFS") (see press releases dated January 9th and February 6th, 2013).
Drill hole FW12-58, located west of Lac Hippocampe at the north end of the West Deposit, intersected 161.6 m of high grade specular hematite iron formation grading 34.3% Total Iron ("FeT") at the north-western limits of the currently defined in-pit optimized resource. The resource remains open down-dip to the west and along strike to the north and will potentially add to all categories of resources while expanding the West Deposit pit shell.
Champion recently announced an updated MRE with combined In-pit Optimized Measured and Indicated Resources in the West and East Deposits totalling 691.3 Million tonnes ("Mt") grading 31.5% total Iron ("FeT") with additional Inferred Resources totalling 479.8 Mt grading 30.4% FeT at a 15% FeT cut-off grade.
Champion's recently completed PFS included 464.6 Mt grading 32.4% FeT of Proven and Probable Reserves sufficient to produce an average of 9.3 Mt of iron concentrate annually for an estimated 19.6 year mine life. The PFS engineered pits recovered 67% of the combined Measured and Indicated Resources within the optimized resource pit shell and did not include any portion of the 479.8 Mt of Inferred Resource within the engineered pits excepting 45.8 Mt treated as "waste".
The In-pit Optimized Resource model suggests a much larger tonnage of iron formation ("IF") that is expected to be exploited if sufficient current In-pit Optimized Inferred Resources could be converted to Reserves following the planned 2013 drill program.
Tom Larsen, Champion's President and CEO stated, "The results from the remaining holes completed in our 2012 drilling program provide us with added confidence that we can delineate sufficient additional reserves at the CFLN Project's West and East Deposits to produce 20 Mt of iron concentrate annually from 2 concentrator lines over a minimum of 20 years, for inclusion in our Feasibility Study later this year. These and additional results from our trenching program that were received subsequent to the current MRE and PFS move us closer to achieving our Reserve target goal."
At the cut-off date for the current MRE, assay results were not received for holes FW12-57, 58, 59 and 59B, although the logged geological units in these holes were used to assist with interpretation and modeling of the IF. Additionally, the drilling of holes FW12-60, 61, 62 and 62B had not yet been completed. Table 1 provides highlights of composited assay results for the remaining drill holes completed in 2012 and not included in the current MRE and PFS.
|Table 1 - Highlights of Composited Assay Results|
|West Deposit Area 2012 DDH's FW12-56 to 62B inclusive|
|* Hole FW12-59 was abandoned at 30m due to technical difficulties. The composite reported for hole FW12-59B is calculated from the weighted length average of the assays for 18.68m of the 20.54m reported interval. Assays for seven samples each 20-30cm in length totalling 1.86m remain pending for this interval. The seven samples were collected for geo-mechanical testing prior to assaying. The composite grade will be re-calculated when the remaining assays are available but are not expected to significantly impact the reported composite grade.|
Hole FW12-57 intersected 84.0 m grading 33.6% FeT in the central and deeper portion of the deposit.
Drill holes FW12-59 to FW12-62B, inclusive were drilled on 100 m spaced sections from a barge on the northern portion of Lac Hippocampe. The results are expected to upgrade a portion of the current Inferred Resources, located beneath the lake at the north end of the West Deposit, to Measured and Indicated categories. An additional 1,000 m of drilling will be conducted from the ice shortly over the southern portion of Lac Hippocampe to upgrade current Inferred Resources to Measured and Indicated categories.
In addition to the remaining 2012 drill results that became available after the announcement of the current MRE, Champion also completed and received results for an extensive surface trenching and channel sampling program over the East Deposit. An additional 506 channel sample assays are available to potentially upgrade a portion of current shallow Inferred Resources in the East Deposit to Measured and Indicated categories. Additional trenching is currently being planned for the 2013 summer field season to further define and upgrade near-surface resources underlying the north-western limit of the East Deposit planned pit.
About Champion Iron Mines Limited
Champion is an iron exploration and development company with offices in Montreal and Toronto, and is focused on developing its significant iron resources in the provinces of Québec and Newfoundland & Labrador. Champion holds a 100% interest in the Fermont Iron Holdings and a 44% interest in the Attikamagen Iron Project located in both Québec and Labrador. The Attikamagen Project is under option to Labec Century Iron Ore Inc. ("Labec"), a subsidiary of Century Iron Mines Corporation, under which Labec can earn up to a 60% interest.
Champion's Fermont Iron Holdings, including its flagship Consolidated Fire Lake North Project, are located in Canada's major iron ore producing district, in close proximity to five producing iron mines, existing transportation and power infrastructure. Consolidated Fire Lake North is located immediately north of Arcelor Mittal's operating Fire Lake Mine and 60 km south of Cliffs Natural Resources Inc.'s Bloom Lake Mine in northeastern Québec. Champion's management and advisory board includes mining and exploration professionals with the mine development and operations experience to build, commission, and operate the future Consolidated Fire Lake North mine.
The technical information in this news release was approved by Mr. Bruce Mitton P. Geo., VP Exploration and Mr. Jean-Luc Chouinard, ing. VP Project Development for Champion Iron Mines, who are Qualified Persons under NI 43-101 standards.
This news release includes certain information that may constitute "forward-looking information" under applicable Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking information includes, but is not limited to, statements about planned operations at the Company's projects, including its Consolidated Fire Lake North Project. Forward-looking information is necessarily based upon a number of estimates and assumptions that, while considered reasonable, are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors which may cause the actual results and future events to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking information, including the risks identified in Champion's annual information forms, management discussion and analysis and other securities regulatory filings by Champion on SEDAR (including under the heading "Risk Factors" therein). There can be no assurance that such information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking information. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. All forward-looking information contained in this press release is given as of the date hereof and is based upon the opinions and estimates of Champion's management and information available to management as at the date hereof. Champion disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.