By Tom Degun

June 9 - Britain’s Olympic cycling champion Jamie Staff (pictured) is set to try to deny his former team-mates, including Sir Chris Hoy, the opportunity of glory at London 2012 after accepting a new job to coach the United States track sprint team.

The 37-year-old from Ashford in Kent won gold alongside Sir Chris and Jason Kenny at the Beijing 2008 Olympics but was forced to retire in March due to a chronic back problem.

Staff, a former BMX world champion, said: "I am very excited to be given the opportunity to develop USA Cycling’s track sprint programme.

"My immediate goals are to get us in a position to compete in the London Olympics and then go on and win multiple medals in Rio in 2016 and beyond."

Staff, whose wife Malia is American, also admitted that he was largely persuaded to move because of the top cycling facilities available in the country.

He will be based in Carson, California, at the Home Depot Center, which is part of the same complex where David Beckham's Los Angeles Galaxy are located.

Staff said: "We have a world-class velodrome facility in the Home Depot Center and a VP [USA Cycling vice-president Jim Miller] with the vision and desire to put American sprint track cycling on the map and now myself with the motivation and experience to help deliver."

But Staff admitted that the Americans are unlikely to present much of a threat to Britain's medal hopes at London.

He said: "I am very excited.

"I always intended to go back to the States.

"My wife's American and my kids were born there.

"Long term I would like to see it as a managerial role but initially it's hands on coaching at multiple levels.

"We've got hardly any athletes.

"I've got to find those athletes.

"At the moment I'm predicting one medal in Rio, in six years time, and that's if I can secure any athletes."

Staff took up track cycling in 2001 with the primary goal of winning an Olympic medal.

He quickly became renowned as the world’s fastest starter, winning his first World Championships gold in Copenhagen in 2002 just a year after joining the British track team.

Staff went on to win silver at the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games before his proudest moment came by leading off the gold medal winning team in Beijing.

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