Junior mineral exploration and development company Westridge Resources (TSX.V:WST) has market watchers on the edge of their seats waiting to see what its “golden touch” will produce next.
The relatively new company has maintained investor support since it emerged in 2010, largely due to the management and the successes at its flagship Charay project in Mexico.
Westridge came on the market just two years ago, with an IPO of 25 cents per share. Fast forward to today; where the company’s shares are trading at 2.5x that price throughout all these turbulent market conditions. This is certainly an testament to the strength of the company.
Attributable to many factors, at the forefront of its success is the company’s management team, which boasts over 90 years of combined experience in the field – much of it in South America and Mexico.
President and CEO Peter Schulhof has over 10 years in small cap junior mining companies, coupled with over 30 years of experience in the start up, management and financing of public and private companies.
Leading the board of directors is Chairman Bill Radvak, a mining engineer who joined the team in January.
Radvak brings 25 years experience in the start-up, management and financing of public companies with him. He started as president and CEO at American Vanadium in March 2010, and has since overseen the company’s flagship Gibellini vanadium project outside of Eureka, Nev., which is slated to begin production in 2012.
He is expected to assist Schulhof with some of the heavy lifting during the financing stages, and brings development experience.
Among the experienced team at Westridge is director Richard Barclay, who along with being the co-founder of Eldorado Gold and Bema Gold, brings 35 years of leadership in highly successful exploration and development companies in the mining sector.
With all the experience the Westridge management brings to the table, it was almost inevitable that the Charay project should yield positive results.
Located approximately 40 minutes by car northeast of Los Mochis, an ocean-side city in the State of Sinaloa, Mexico, the Charay project hosts a high-grade epithermal gold/silver vein system that has shown indications for the potential of a significant resource.
Currently, Westridge has a program underway to explore the property, and the company says that significant cost advantages are associated with the Charay project due to mineralization at surface, ease of access and excellent infrastructure that currently exists on or very nearby the property.
The property is comprised of five concessions totaling 11,000 hectares close to railroads, trans-continental power lines and large water sources. It is just 15 minutes away from two major four-lane highways, power and water are already on site and it is easily accessible by ro.
Westridge has also previously reported that the veins at Charay typically come in parallel groups, and have the potential for deeper-gold mineralization that could establish underground mining potential.
The drilling program on the Charay project began in the first quarter of 2012. Its most recent results, published in early March, revealed that it had found several new epithermal veins south of the main El Padre Vein at the Charay project.
This field work is being conducted at the same time as a diamond drill program at the project.
"Our mapping and trenching program has now demonstrated that the total, cumulative strike length of all vein features identified and inferred on the property is now reaching a total of 3,000 meters, more than ten times the strike length previously identified for the El Padre Vein," said president and CEO, Peter Schulhof, in March.
"Worth noting is that we have explored far less than one percent of our 105 square kilometer Charay Project and we expect surface work to continue to identify more vein targets on the property."
The company’s drilling program is designed to extend and expand the zone of gold and silver mineralization defined by previous drilling on the El Padre vein both to depth and along strike.
Previously a drilling program consisted of 20 holes to a depth of approximately 50 meters below the surface and approximately 250 meters along the strike of the El Padre vein.
Three twin holes were completed in July 2011 to confirm the earlier drilling.
Westridge was able to confirm the presence of bonanza grade gold and silver in the El Padre vein system (0.75m at 204.0 gpt Au and 445 gpt Ag) and potential for longer intervals of high grade (9.8m at 18.78 gpt Au).
One drill hole also indicated potential for multiple vein intersections, with a second interval of gold mineralization below the interpreted intersection of the El Padre vein.
Westridge said it will continue to pursue equity financing as the operation moves forward.
With only 15 million shares outstanding, Westridge has a market capitalization of C$9 million - leaving oodles of upside potential in the share price if the company continues to hit mineralization.
Westridge’s commitment to creating strong ties with the communities around Los Mochis and Charay has also been a deciding factor in the company’s great performance thus far.
The company has noted that its ground-level managers, including both head geologists, are all fluent Spanish speakers, and Westridge has hired regional geological and public-relations staff to help with the transition into the area.
So it would seem that Westridge has all the ingredients it needs for success, and less than two years after its arrival on the market, it has instilled confidence in investors and continues to move in the right direction.
All eyes are on Westridge.