Champion Minerals Inc.

Champion Minerals Inc.

December 15, 2010 10:05 ET

Champion Minerals Completes Assessment of Historic Work on 14 Claim Blocks of its Fermont Iron Property

Outlines 2011 Drilling Program with the Potential to Confirm and Significantly Increase Historical Mineral Resources* from the Current 600 Million Tonnes Grading 30.5% Total Iron

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 15, 2010) - CHAMPION MINERALS INC. (TSX:CHM) (FRANKFURT:P02) ("Champion" or the "Company") is pleased to announce it has completed an assessment of the exploration potential of the historic work on fourteen (14) claim blocks from the Company's Fermont Iron Property (the "Property"). Two (2) additional claim blocks, Fire Lake North and Bellechasse already host 603 million tonnes in current NI 43-101 Mineral Resources grading 29% Total Iron. Of these fourteen (14) claim blocks, six (6) host a total of 603 million tonnes grading 30.5% Iron in Historical Mineral Resources* (Paquet, 1963; MRNFQ Assessment File GM 13035). The following table summarizes the Historic and Current Mineral Resources* from the Property:

NI 43-101
Fire Lake North 17 41 Mt @ 31% Iron   388 Mt @ 29% Iron1 PEA, DD: 15,000m
Bellechasse 10 91 Mt @ 30% Iron   215 Mt @ 29% Iron1 DD: 3,000m
Moire 8 101 Mt @ 31% Iron   n/a DD: 5,000m
O'Keefe -Purdy 19 51 Mt @ 37% Iron   n/a DD: 6,000m
Penguin 14 100 Mt @ 30% Iron   n/a DD pending
Silicate-Brutus 19 304 Mt @ 29% Iron   n/a DD pending
Audrey-Ernie 22 23 Mt @ 33% Iron   n/a DD pending
Big Three 2 24 Mt @ 33% Iron   n/a DD pending
Harvey-Tuttle 38 n/a   n/a MRE pending
TOTAL 149 603 Mt  @ 30.5% Iron   603 Mt @ 29% Iron  

Notes: Numbers have been rounded following NI 43-101 standards; PEA – Preliminary Economic Assessment Study; DD – Diamond Drilling; n/a – no estimates; MRE - Mineral Resources Estimates. Historical Mineral Resources* are from Paquet, 1963 (MRNFQ Assessment File GM 13035). 1 Grade is quoted at a 15% Iron cut-off.

The table contains the Historical Mineral Resources* at Fire Lake North and Bellechasse but they are not included in the total Historical Mineral Resources*, since they have been converted and increased to significantly higher current NI 43-101 Mineral Resources.

Jeff Hussey, P. Geo., VP Exploration of Champion stated "We expect to have new NI 43-101 compliant Mineral Resource Estimates at Harvey-Tuttle early in Q1-2011 followed in early Q2 by estimates for the Moire Lake Claim Block that already hosts 101 million tonnes of Historical Mineral Resources*. The completion of drilling at Fire Lake North and Bellechase in Q1-2011 also has the potential to add significant additional resources to the current NI 43-101 compliant mineral resources of 603 MT of 29% Total Iron. Current exploration plans also include drill testing the main iron occurrences that already host 51 million tonnes at 37% Total Iron at the O'Keefe-Purdy Claim Block. One of these showings hosts coarse grained - higher grade specularite similar to the higher grade portions of the Fire Lake North deposits. This higher grade material produces a very clean and higher grade concentrate. With O'Keefe-Purdy's deca-kilometric magnetic iron formation signatures, we are looking forward to drill testing this claim block".

Tom Larsen, President and CEO of Champion, added "We plan an initial 25,000 m of drilling during the first two quarters of 2011, to validate and potentially increase the Historical Mineral Resources* from the present 603 million tonnes at 30.5% Total Iron on 6 claim blocks (Moire Lake, O'Keefe-Purdy, Penguin, Silicate-Brutus, Audrey-Ernie and Big Three) into compliant NI 43-101 Mineral Resources. A further 25,000 m will be continued in the second half of the year, including a program to enhance value in the Cluster 3 area located to the southwest of Cluster 2." Highlights of this program are outlined below for two (2) of the most strategic claim blocks, Moire Lake and O'Keefe-Purdy, due to their proximity to the ongoing Champion drilling at Fire Lake, current resources, and existing infrastructure.

Moire Lake Claim Block

The 25 claims / 11 km2 Moire Lake Claim Block in Cluster 1 encompasses the eastern extension of the Moire Lake Iron Occurrence (MRNFQ Deposit File 23B14-0014) in Champion's Moire Lake Claim Block, located 4 kilometres southwest of the mining town of Fermont. Explored in the 1950's, the Moire Lake Iron Occurrence hosts Historic Mineral Resources* of 101.6 million tonnes grading 30.8% Iron (MRNFQ Assessment File GM13035, 1963). The iron formation is essentially a massive, thick-banded quartz-magnetite rock, with approximately one-quarter of the 8 kilometres long magnetite and specular hematite iron formation being tested. Previous work has already defined a 30 m wide zone of specular hematite.

Champion has scheduled a 5,000 m drill program at the Moire Lake Iron Occurrence to commence in Q1-2011. The drilling will test the iron mineralization in order to validate the historical numbers as the Company seeks to significantly increase the Historical Mineral Resources* into NI 43-101 compliant Mineral Resource Estimates.

O'Keefe-Purdy Claim Block

The 182 claims / 94.3 km2 O'Keefe-Purdy Claim Block in Cluster 2, located due north of the Harvey-Tuttle Claim Block, covers the O'Keefe Lake Iron Occurrence (MRNFQ Deposit File 23B12-0003) discovered in 1957. The claims are centred on 19 kilometres of tightly folded and coarse-grained hematite, magnetite (5%) and quartz iron formation which hosts Historic Mineral Resources* of 51 million tonnes grading 37% Total Iron (MRNFQ Assessment File GM31090, 1975). In 1975, the O'Keefe Lake Occurrence was part of a larger claim package held by Canadian Javelin Limited who was also exploring the Star Lake Occurrence located 2.5 km to the west (outside Champion's claim block). At Star Lake, Historic Mineral Resources* totalled 235.7 million tonnes grading 32.4% Total Iron.

Canadian Javelin Limited completed metallurgical testing on a combined sample from Star Lake and O'Keefe Lake Occurrences which yielded a concentrate of 67.4% Iron and 3.4% Silica at a crushing size of -20 mesh (or under 0.84 millimetres) (MRNFQ Assessment File GM31090, 1975). 

Champion completed a surface prospecting program in 2010. Mineralized bedrock from the northwest segment of the O'Keefe Lake Iron Occurrence displayed coarse grained specular hematite with four (4) grab sample grades ranging from 22.9% to 35.5% Total Iron.

Champion has also scheduled a 6,000 m drill program at the O'Keefe Lake Iron Occurrence to commence in Q1/Q2-2011, designed to validate and potentially significantly increase the Historical Mineral Resources* into NI 43-101 compliant Mineral Resources Estimates.

The Fermont Iron Property

Champion has an 82.5% direct interest, with Fancamp Exploration Ltd. (TSX-V: FNC) holding 17.5%, in the 642 km2 Fermont Iron Property consisting of 16 strategic claim blocks grouped into three clusters, termed Clusters 1, 2 and 3, which contain Historical Mineral Resources* of 603 million tonnes grading 30.5% Iron (Paquet, 1963; MRNFQ Assessment File GM 13035). The Fermont Iron Property hosts more than 200 kilometres of iron formation with large untested potential to host additional Mineral Resources.

Champion recently issued a NI 43-101 Mineral Resource Estimate for the Fire Lake North Claim Block (refer to the Champion news release dated August 18, 2010). At a 15% Total Iron cut-off grade, there are 388 million tonnes grading 29% Total Iron in Inferred Mineral Resources. BBA Inc. (of Montreal) is completing a NI 43-101 Technical Report with results of a Preliminary Assessment (''PA") Study on Fire Lake North that include engineered or designed pits on the East and West Limb areas that include 251 million tonnes grading 30.5% Total Iron. The PA study shows a Net Present Value (NPV) of US$ 1.637 billion at a cash flow discount rate of 5% based on an Iron concentrate production rate of 7 million tonnes per year at a grade of 65% Iron. The internal rate of return ("IRR") for the project is 24.8% (refer to the Champion news release dated November 3, 2010).

The Fire Lake North iron formations continue on the contiguous Bellechasse Claim Block ("Bellechasse") where Champion had previously outlined Inferred Mineral Resources of 215 million tonnes grading 29% Total Iron. The combined Fire Lake North and Bellechasse estimates total 603 million tonnes grading 29% Total Iron Inferred Mineral Resources.

The Fermont Iron Property Fire Lake North is situated within the Labrador Trough of northeastern Quebec and western Labrador, widely recognized as a world class Iron ore mining camp, the Fermont-Wabush-Labrador City Iron Ore District (the "District"). The four producers in the vicinity comprise Canada's Iron ore production estimated at more than 40 million tonnes of Iron ore concentrate per year including the recently commissioned Consolidated Thompson Iron Mines Limited's Bloom Lake mine. Indications are that the District will be producing more than 60 million tonnes of concentrate per year in the future based on disclosed expansion plans. This is a well recognized Canadian iron ore producing camp known for its high quality concentrate and relatively low operating costs.

About Champion Minerals Inc.

Champion is an exploration and development Company focused on discovering and developing significant iron ore resources in eastern Canada, particularly in the provinces of Quebec and Newfoundland & Labrador. The Company's projects include the Fermont Iron Property in northeastern Quebec, the Attikamagen Iron Property in northeastern Quebec and western Labrador, and the Powderhorn/Gullbridge Base Metal Projects in central Newfoundland.

* All Historical Mineral Resources outlined in the text are non-compliant to NI 43-101 Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves standards, and should therefore not be relied upon. A Qualified Person has not done sufficient work to upgrade or classify these Historical Mineral Resources as current NI 43-101 compliant Mineral resources. The current Mineral Resource estimates were calculated using the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM), CIM Standards on Mineral Resources and Reserves, Definitions and Guidelines prepared by the CIM Standing Committee on Reserve Definitions and adopted by CIM Council December 11, 2005.

The technical information in this news release was prepared, revised and approved by Jeff Hussey P. Geo., VP Exploration of the Company and Jean Lafleur, P. Geo., Director and Technical Advisor to the President and CEO of Champion. Both individuals are Qualified Persons under NI 43-101 standards.

Statements made in this news release that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" and readers are cautioned that any such statements are not guarantees of future performance, and that actual developments or results, may vary materially from those in these "forward-looking" statements.

Contact Information

  • Champion Minerals Inc.
    Thomas G. Larsen
    President and CEO
    Champion Minerals Inc.
    Jorge Estepa