NESSIE stayed well out of sight - thankfully - as a crew of Monmouth Rowing Club ladies ‘Monstered the Loch’ in near perfect conditions on Saturday.

Maggie Hickland, Liz Newman, Mary Miller and Dawn Brace joined a 100-strong fleet of rowing boats, canoes and other human-powered craft to race 21 miles along Loch Ness from Fort Augustus to Fort William.

And they came home 38th overall in a gig quadruple scull, crossing the line in three hours 14 minutes and 15 seconds.

Fastest boat overall was a quad scull from Jersey, which made it to the line in 2.32.27, still some 28 minutes short of the record set by a GB squad eight four years ago.

Four Monmouth single scullers also joined a 500-strong Scullers’ Head singles field on Saturday to race the reverse Boat Race course on the Thames’ Tideway.

Al Butler (top right, photos by Ben Rodford) came 159th overall in 23.06 and 13th in the masters’ lightweight class, just seven seconds ahead of club mate Sam Bruton (right below) in 168th.

Fresh from landing a silver medal in the GB girls’ coxless four at the World Rowing Junior Championships in Paris last month, former Monmouth Comprehensive pupil Violet Holbrow-Brooksbank raced home third in the girls’ U18 class, crossing in 23.49 for 242nd overall.

The class was won by her Wycliffe club mate, world junior quad sculls medallist Eloise Etherington, in 23.11.

Monmouth RC’s Jonathan Ferris also crossed in 24.37 to finish second in the Masters G (over-65) men’s class and 316th overall, 25 seconds behind Tideway Scullers class winner Mark Alloway.

Fastest on the day was dual GB and US international Jamie Copus in 20.37, while quickest woman was Australian cap Georgia Miansarow in 21.49, who placed 38th overall.