Avion Gold Corporation
TSX VENTURE : AVR
OTCQX : AVGCF

Avion Gold Corporation

April 15, 2010 07:30 ET

Avion Intersects 21.77 g/t Au Over 21 Metres, Near Surface, 2 km South of Tabakoto

GOAL TO DEVELOP ANOTHER OPEN PITTABLE RESOURCE

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 15, 2010) - Avion Gold Corporation (TSX VENTURE:AVR)(OTCQX:AVGCF) ("Avion") is pleased to announce the results from shallow reverse circulation drill and core holes that tested near surface portions of the northwest-trending Dioulafoundou zone located approximately 2 km south of the Tabakoto Pit (see figure 1). Drilling to date has returned good grade intercepts along an approximate 300 metre strike length, with highlights including (see figure 2):

  • 14.86 g/t Au over 15.9 metres
  • 4.52 g/t Au over 22.0 metres
  • 6.37 g/t Au over 17.5 metres
  • 4.55 g/t Au over 22.0 metres
  • 17.92 g/t Au over 6.0 metres
  • 10.0 g/t Au over 12.0 metres
  • 6.39 g/t Au over 10.0 metres
  • 21.77 g/t Au over 21.0 metres
  • 4.55 g/t Au over 22.0 metres

A complete summary of the latest holes is in the table below. All holes intersected mineralization at depths less than 65 metres vertically below surface. A significant amount of this mineralization is outside of a previously defined and existing open pit inferred mineral resource for the Dioulafoundou zone (see figure 2) of 349,300 tonnes grading 3.76 g/t Au totaling 42,000 ounces at a 1 g/t Au cut-off (Avion news release May 19, 2009). In addition, the new drilling indicates significantly higher grades in the near-surface portions of the resource than were estimated and indicated by previous drilling. Mineralization remains open at depth and may be open along strike.

Avion is anticipating the completion of the Dioulafoundou work program in about three weeks, with holes to be completed on 25 metre centres to depths of approximately 75 metres vertically below surface. The goal of this program is to define a measured and indicated resource by the end of the second quarter which could be advanced to a production decision before the end of the third quarter.

Avion also has twinned several of the reverse circulation holes to validate the reverse circulation results and to extend some of the holes that ended in mineralization, which graded up to 78.32 g/t Au (DRC-10-27). Samples from this program are being collected for metallurgical testing and specific gravity tests are ongoing.

Artisanal activity has also resulted in the absence of some or all of the mineralization in some of the current holes that tested the upper 15-20 metres of the zone. Since the water table in this area is high it is expected that artisanal mining activity did not extend much beyond these levels and only did so intermittently along the strike of the zone, as indicated by historic workings.

John Begeman, Avion's President and CEO, stated, "These excellent high grade, near surface drill results, should have a significant impact on Avion's short term plans as we make the transition from a dominantly open pit producer to a predominantly underground producer both in terms of scheduling flexibility and adding a potentially open pittable resource with high grades."

Avion's procedures for handling reverse circulation drill chips comprise initial splitting of the rock chips from one metre drill length samples into 2.0 kg samples, as well as description and logging into a database. Theses samples, and some of the recent core samples, are then delivered to the Company's mine site laboratory at Tabakoto. Assay standard samples are inserted every 25th sample and duplicate reverse circulation from every 20th sample are sent in as a separate sample to double check the assays from these intervals. This sampling procedure was initiated and periodically reviewed by Avion's Senior Vice President of Exploration, Don Dudek, P. Geo. The assay samples are then crushed to 3 mm with a riffle split if required, to 1.5 kg, the entire sample milled in a LM2 mill to a nominal 95% passing 75 micrometres. All the preparation equipment is flushed with barren material prior to the commencement of the job and all sample bowls are scrapped clean with a scratch pad. Gold values were determined by Fire Assay and AAS with a 50 gram nominal sample weight. In order to ensure that local, exceptionally high grade assays are not overly represented in assay composites Avion is also presenting assay composites, with high grade samples capped at 30.0 g/t Au, which is the capping level deemed appropriate for the initial samples from the Dioulafoundou zone and consistent with previous practice on the property.

Avion's results from the on-site laboratory have been of consistent high quality, with assay standards returning values well within accepted ranges.

To date, Avion's Tabakoto area exploration has completed over 188 holes totaling over 17,600 metres of core and reverse circulation drilling. A significant amount of the core assays are still outstanding.

Don Dudek, P.Geo., the Senior Vice President, Exploration of the Company and a qualified person under National Instrument 43-101, has reviewed the scientific and technical information in this press release. 

About Avion Gold Corporation

Avion is a Canadian-based gold company focused in West Africa. The Company holds 80% of the Tabakoto and Segala gold projects in Mali. Gold production commenced at these projects in 2009 with just over 51,000 ounces produced last year. Avion continues to progress towards reaching its previously stated goal to achieve a production rate of 200,000 ounces of gold per year from its Tabakoto/ Segala operations with an aggressive exploration program, underground mine planning for the Segala and Tabakoto deposits and finalization of production upgrade studies in progress. Avion's 2010 production goal was initially estimated at 100,000 ounces of gold. Anticipated 2010 gold production of approximately 100,000 ounces is under review. Avion has a highly skilled management team, with a focus on growth and consolidation within West Africa.

Cautionary Notes

This press release contains "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities legislation. Forward-looking information includes, without limitation, statements regarding the impact of the drilling results on the Company; statements with respect to the development potential and timetable of the Mali projects; the future price of gold; the estimation of mineral resources; conclusions of economic evaluation (including scoping studies); the realization of mineral resource estimates; the timing and amount of estimated future production, development and exploration; costs of future activities; capital and operating expenditures; success of exploration activities; mining or processing issues; currency exchange rates; government regulation of mining operations; and environmental risks. Generally, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates" or "does not anticipate", or "believes", or variations of such words and phrases or state that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will be taken", "occur" or "be achieved". Forward-looking information is subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking information, including but not limited to: general business, economic, competitive, geopolitical and social uncertainties; the actual results of current exploration activities; ability to successfully integrate the purchased properties; foreign operations risks; other risks inherent in the mining industry and other risks described in the annual information form of the Company which is available under the profile of the Company on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking information, there may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. 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 statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. The Company does not undertake to update any forward-looking information, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.

SUMMARY OF AVION'S DIOULAFOUNDOU ASSAY RESULTS

eastern
HOLE # FROM TO LENGTH TRUE
WIDTH
Au g/t CAPPED* ASSAY COMMENT
D-08-03 153.0 160.5 7.5 3.5 8.93 8.93  
D-09-03 139.7 155 15.3 12.0 3.67 3.97  
D-10-15 64.0 81.2 17.2 13.0 6.37 6.37  
D-10-16 34.0 49.5 15.5 12.0 4.96 4.96  
D-10-17 33.0 50.4 17.4 15.0 4.79 4.33  
D-10-28 61.0 64.4 3.4 2.8 2.33 2.33  
D-10-33 84.5 100.4 15.9 12.0 14.86 8.75  
DRC-10-26 52.0 58.0 6.0 4.0 1.05 1.05  
DRC-10-27 39.0 50.0 11.0 9.0 17.1 17.1  
DRC-10-28 48.0 55.0 7.0 5.0 5.86 5.86  
DRC-10-29 26.0 38.0 12.0 8.0 10.00 10.00  
DRC-10-30 25.0 31.0 6.0 4.0 17.92 17.02  
DRC-10-31 21.0 31.0 10.0 6.0 6.39 6.39  
DRC-10-32 33.0 37.0 4.0 3.0 8.47 8.47  
DRC-10-33 55.0 77.0 22.0 18.0 4.52 4.52  
DRC-10-34 24.0 45.0 21.0 14.0 21.77 9.21  
DRC-10-35 1.0 8.0 7.0 0.0 0 0 Artisanal working
DRC-10-36 23.0 27.0 4.0 3.0 2.56 2.56  
DRC-10-37 10.0 12.0 2.0 0.0 0 0 Artisanal working
DRC-10-41 8.0 35.0 27.0 22.0 1.85 1.85  
DRC-10-43 16.0 38.0 22.0 18.0 4.55 4.55  
DRC-10-45 23.0 32.0 9.0 7.0 2.11 2.11  
DRC-10-49 78.0 90.0 12.0 6.0 3.55 3.55  
*Individual assays above 30 g/t Au are cut to 30 g/t

To view the first figure associated with this release, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/avr0415fig1.pdf.

To view the second figure associated with this release, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/avr0415fig2.pdf.

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Contact Information

  • Avion Gold Corporation
    Rene Bharti
    Vice President Business Development
    (416) 861-5913
    rene@aviongoldcorp.com