Things are moving quickly at Tocvan (TOC.C). On Friday February 19, it closed trading at an all time high of $0.72, up $0.10 on the day. The market is beginning to understand the potential of Tocvan’s Pilar property in Mexico.
As Derek Wood, CEO explained on the phone from Mexico, “We want to create maximum shareholder value with minimum dilution.”
A huge part of maximizing shareholder value is having the right people in place to advance Tocvan’s Pilar Project in Mexico. Having Brodie Sutherland in place as Vice President Exploration means that an experienced geo is guiding operations. Sutherland’s position was strengthened with the hiring of Rodrigo Calles-Montijo as exploration manager in Mexico and appointing him to the Board of Directors. Calles-Montijo is an experienced geologist, trained in Mexico with over 30 years of global mineral exploration experience, working with groups that include Rio Tinto, Kennecott, SRK Consulting. His is a 43-101 qualified person and bilingual in Spanish and English.
While Tocvan is focussed on the Pilar Project in the state of Sonora in Mexico where Calles-Montijo is a crucial link to the geologists and drillers working the project, the company is also looking at other Mexican opportunities. Having a Mexican national on the Board just makes sense. It also makes sense, in these COVID times, to have an exploration manager who is not subject to quarantine.
Tocvan released the results of its first, 9 hole, reverse circulation drill program on February 9, 2021. In that release, CEO Derek Wood, states, “Today’s results confirm the impressive gold and silver mineralization at Pilar is open for expansion. Planning is well underway for our next phase of drilling that will continue to expand the areas of known mineralization and test other property wide targets, drilling deeper and farther out from our established Main Zone.”
On the phone, Brodie Sutherland discussed the results, “The stand out is that we have confirmed mineralization on the property,” said Sutherland. “We are seeing broad low grade surrounding shoots of high grade. We’re seeing low grade at surface but when we stepped out and went deeper we see bigger intervals.”
“At the center we’ve seen 10 meters of 10 grams per ton gold with an ounce of silver,” said Sutherland. “We see a lot of potential for expansion.”
“Traditionally, Pilar has been seen as a gold deposit, but we are seeing a silver story developing as well,” said Sutherland. “We’re seeing very high grade silver values. Pilar is a classic epithermal system. It has bonanza type grades but even the low grade is over 1 gpt gold. Which suggests the best of both worlds with a pit and then mining the shoots.”
To date, Tocvan has focussed its drilling in what it refers to as the “Main Zone”. However, the company announced the next round of its exploration which will map and sample key targets across the Pilar Gold-Silver Project. “We have good surface geo chem across 1200 meters at surface,” explained Sutherland. “We have identified new target areas which have never been drilled and they are lining up with artisanal workings.”
In this release Sutherland states, “We are excited to have boots back on the ground at Pilar. The results released last week for our Phase I drill program show the potential to grow the known extent of mineralization at depth and along strike. The high-grade gold and silver intercepts provide evidence for deep rooted structures which we are just starting to uncover. Detailed mapping and sampling of the surface expressions of these structures will aid in drill targeting as we move towards a Phase II drill program. In addition, the 4-Trench Zone provides the opportunity to discover a parallel trend to the Main Zone of equal significance.”
The objective of this exploration is to provide the targets for the next phase of drilling expected to begin in late March. “We’re aiming for 2400 to 3000 meters of reverse circulation drilling,” said Sutherland. “We will drill a little deeper, 200 to 250 meters. We want to grow at depth and keep growing.”
One thing which will drive Tocvan as it expands the areas of mineralization is the access it has to over 17,700m of Historic Core & RC drilling as well as trenching and sampling results. Confirmation drilling during phase I drilling has allowed these historic results to be used in a 43-101 resource estimate.
The next few months of exploration, mapping and drilling will add a lot of information about this highly prospective property. A fact which the market has rewarded significantly. On Friday February 19th, Tocvan traded 374 thousand shares and rose $0.10 to an all time high of $0.72. However, even at this all time high, with only 24.69 million shares outstanding, Tocvan still has a very modest $17.64 million market cap.