Drillsearch to Spud Marino-1 Following Chiton Oil Discovery

Drillsearch advised that the Marino-1 well is planned to spud on Saturday, August 22, 2009. Marino-1 is the second of a two-well program in PEL 91, following the Chiton-1 oil discovery. Drillsearch holds a 60% interest in PEL 91, the Marino-1 and Chiton-1 oil discovery. The well is being operated by Beach Petroleum (40%) using the Ensign Rig# 30. Drilling to a planned total depth of 1948 meters is expected to take approximately 12 days.

Marino-1 will test a second prospect in PEL 91 along the 'oil fairway' on the western flank of the Patchawarra Trough, approximately 9 kilometers north of Chiton-1. The Marino prospect is a robust structural trap matured for drilling with the benefit of data from the Modiolus 3D Seismic Survey. The primary objective for Marino-1 is the Namur Sandstone that has proved to be a prolific oil producer along the same trend immediately to the south in PEL 92 and which is the pay zone in the Chiton oil discovery.

Secondary objectives are within the Birkhead Formation that is productive immediately to the north in PEL104 and the Poolowanna Formation that is also productive in PEL 92 to the south.

Seismic mapping of the Namur horizon indicates that the Marino Structure has approximately 12 meters of vertical relief and an areal extent of 8.6 square kilometers. Probabilistic resource assessments give mean recoverable oil reserves of 2.0 mmbbl and P10 (High) potential of 4.4 mmbbl. The Marino prospect has an assessed probability of success of 31% with the key element of risk being hydrocarbon charge.

Marino-1 will be drilled as a conventional vertical well with logging and possible testing planned after the well reaches total depth, unlike Chiton-1 which was evaluated while drilling using Logging While Drilling (LWD) equipment. The main target zone is expected to be penetrated 5 to 7 days after spud.

Working Interests in the Marino-1 well are:

  • Drillsearch Energy Limited 60%
  • Beach Petroleum Limited 40%