David Rickford was created by Ed Brubaker and Mitch Breitweiser. His first appearance was in Captain America #615.1.
After a series of events led to Bucky Barnes being incarcerated in a Russian prison, Nick Fury hatched a plan to manipulate Steve Rogers, the original Captain America, into wielding the shield once again. Assuming the disguise of a wealthy investor, Fury paid the Dr. Karl Malus, known as the Power Broker, to solicit volunteers for a new Super Soldier program. David Rickford was one of those volunteers.
A highly decorated Special Forces solider, David emerged as the best candidate for the job. Dr. Malus estimated that his program made David stronger then Steve Rogers and twice as fast. After weeks of diligent training, David was given a Captain America costume with a shield and then sent into the field.
David quickly drew the attention of Steve Rogers, who witnessed his unofficial successor easily stop a robbery. Steve chose not to intervene right away and instead asked Sharon Carter to track David's movements.
After concluding his first day as Captain America, David returned to the Power Broker to receive another Super Soldier treatment. He was ambushed and captured by an AIM cell that was determined to turn him into the next MODOK.
Luckily for David, Sharon had been tailing him. She alerted Steve, who managed to board AIM's ship and free David before the conversion process could begin. Together, the two soldiers defeated the AIM cell with little difficulty.
After ensuring that the AIM agents were taken into custody, Steve confronted David and ordered him to immediately stop pretending to be Captain America. David reluctantly agreed, but not before chastising Steve for walking away from the role.
He told Steve that the country needed Captain America; someone to rise above the partisan bickering and set an example for all to follow. Even if David stepped down, he was certain that someone else would emerge to carry on the legacy. David's words deeply affected Steve who sat motionless, staring at his reflection in David's shield.
Powers and Abilities
David received enhancement from Dr. Malus which supposedly made him stronger the Steve Rogers and twice as fast. Malus' earlier experiments in strength enhancement successfully empowered men like the USAgent and D-Man with super strength. Since David was seen returning to Malus' lab for another treatment it is uncertain if these enhancements were permanent.
David is a highly trained Special Forces soldier and received training in the use of a shield as an offensive and defensive weapon.