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Continental increases Woodford, Bakken drilling with 2010 CAPEX increase

ENID, Okla. – Continental Resources Inc. (NYSE: CLR) has increased its capital expenditure budget to $1.3 billion from $850 million to accelerate its drilling program and to increase its acreage positions in the Bakken and Woodford shale plays.

Based on the timing of the additional drilling, Continental now expects production growth in a range of 15% to 17% for 2010. The company's previous production growth guidance was approximately 13%.

"We are responding to tremendous opportunities to accelerate our drilling program and to increase our valuable acreage positions in oil-rich and liquids-rich shale plays in the United States, focusing on the Bakken Shale of North Dakota and Montana, the Anadarko Woodford Shale in western Oklahoma, and the Niobrara Shale in Colorado and Wyoming," said Harold Hamm, CEO.

Bakken
As of July 1, the company has 806,576 net acres leased in the Bakken – a 25% increase from the 645,347 net acres held at year-end 2009. The company is currently running 18 operated rigs in the Bakken with plans to increase that number by year-end.

According to IHS Herold data, Continental Resources was the No. 2 producer in the Bakken in 2008.

Woodford
The company currently holds 233,321 net acres – up 57% from the 148,520 net acres held at year-end 2009 – in the Anadarko Woodford with three operated rigs currently running and plans to increase the rig count in the area by year-end.

According to IHS Herold data, Continental Resources was the No. 4 producer in the Woodford in 2008.

Niobrara shale
Adding to its long-term, oil-concentrated growth strategy, the company has leased 59,071 net acres in the Niobrara shale and plans to spud its first well in the play by year-end 2010.

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