Based on the true story of the greatest long-distance horse race ever run, Hidalgo is an epic action-adventure and one man's journey of personal redemption. Held yearly for centuries, the Ocean of Fire - a 3,000 mile survival race across the Arabian Desert - was a challenge restricted to the finest Arabian horses ever bred, the purest and noblest lines, owned by the greatest royal families. In 1890, a wealthy Sheik invited an American and his horse to enter the race for the first time. Frank T. Hopkins (Mortensen) was a cowboy and dispatch rider for the US cavalry who had once been billed as the greatest rider the West had ever known. The Sheik (Sharif) would put his claim to the test, pitting the American cowboy and his mustang, Hidalgo, against the world's greatest Arabian horses and Bedouin riders - some of whom were determined to prevent the foreigner from finishing the race. For Frank, the Ocean of Fire becomes not only a matter of pride and honor, but a race for his very survival as he and his horse, Hidalgo, attempt the impossible.