Road Demon (1921)

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Instead of saddling up, Tom Mix gets behind the wheel in this picture. But he doesn't forego his cowboy antics completely -- after all, as Hap Higgins, he trades in his horse to get the car. Higgins meets Patricia O'Malley (Claire Anderson), whose father (the ever-dependable Charles K. French) is a car manufacturer. O'Malley is hoping to land a contract with a Japanese firm, if only his car wins the Los Angeles-Phoenix auto race. Hap enters, but O'Malley's driver, Luther McCabe (Lloyd Bacon) causes the race to be lost. Higgins discovers that McCabe is in league with O'Malley's competition, so for the next race, in Fresno, he takes over when McCabe drops out and wins the race. The competitor has locked O'Malley in his hotel room to keep him away from the Japanese executive, but Higgins and some of his cowpuncher pals -- and their horses -- come to the rescue. O'Malley gets the deal, and Higgins gets Patricia.