Official Website of Dartmouth College Varsity Athletics

Heavyweight Rowing Coaching Staff
Topher Bordeau
Head Coach
Coach Info:
Position: Head Coach
Alma Mater: Princeton
Graduating Year: 1998
Experience: 7 Years
Topher Bordeau was named Head Coach of Dartmouth Heavyweight Rowing on July 29, 2006. 

At the time of his hire, Bordeau commented "I'm acutely aware that my career is going to be defined by what Dartmouth crews do in the future, and that's appealing to me. Only six schools have won the Eastern Sprints Championship in the past 25 years: Dartmouth, Harvard, Brown, Penn, Wisconsin, and Princeton. That's an elite club, and Dartmouth has a spot in it. Success here isn't just a dream, it isn't just something we're chasing somewhere down the road. It's a concrete part of our past, and it'll be a concrete part of our future, too."

Since then, the Dartmouth heavyweights have risen from 16th at the Eastern Sprints and 24th at the IRA in 2006 — the year prior to Bordeau's arrival — to 5th at the Eastern Sprints and 8th at the IRA in 2010. The Dartmouth varsity eight was the talk of the rowing world at the 2010 Eastern Sprints, where the Big Green varsity eight became the first 12-seed in the regatta's history to defeat a one-seed (Brown) and advance to the grand final. Dartmouth's performance over the course of the 2010 season earned the crew the Rusty Callow Award, given by vote of the coaches coaches of the Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges (EARC) to the crew that best personified the virtues of "spirit, courage and unity."

"The past few years have been exciting, especially 2010," Bordeau commented after receiving the award on his crew's behalf. "The oarsmen have distinguished themselves with a committment to improvement--as rowers, teammates, and as members of crews--on an almost constant basis. There's a capacity for inspiration that is a significant part of daily life at Dartmouth, and nowhere moreso than at the boathouse. The guys used that capacity to push through some tough times last year and to produce an inspired performance when the stakes were highest. The ability to do that has become a characteristc of rowers who thrive here, and that has made coaching this program incredibly rewarding. It's a credit to the oarsmen that their efforts have been honored by the EARC coaches."

Bordeau has also been involved in coaching at the national team level during his time in Hanover. During the summer of 2008, Bordeau assumed the primary responsibility for selecting and coaching the United States Under-23 National Team men's eight, which made Hanover and the Connecticut River home base in its preparation for the 2008 Under-23 World Championships in Brandenburg, Germany. The crew turned away all challengers in its heat, semi-final, and grand final to win the world championship by open water.

Bordeau also assisted with the selection and training of the 2007 Under-23 National Team men's eight, which also called Hanover and the Connecticut River home for its preparation for the 2007 Under-23 World Championships in Strathclyde, Scotland, where it finished fourth, 1.18 seconds behind the gold medal crew.

Prior to his arrival in Hanover, Bordeau spent the 2005 season coaching the freshman heavyweight crew at Navy, guiding the Midshipmen to their best Eastern Sprints finish in six years. Prior to his stint at Annapolis, he spent three seasons as the freshman lightweight coach at Princeton, where he helped the Tiger novices capture two silver medals and one bronze at the Sprints and IRA and assisted on the 2003 Eastern Sprints Championship varsity squad.

A 1998 graduate of Princeton (BA, English), Bordeau captained a team that enjoyed unprecedented success, winning three IRA titles, three Eastern Sprints titles, and four Rowe Cups during his time in orange and black. After graduation, Bordeau moved to England, where he rowed for Oxford University in the 1999 Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race while studying for a Postgraduate Diploma in Social Administration at Oxford's Hertford College.

When not coaching and recruiting the next generation of Dartmouth heavyweights, Bordeau enjoys running the trails near his home in White River Junction, VT with his dog Roscoe and biking in and around the Upper Valley.