Cheyenne Frontier Days Bull Riding Champion Returns for CBR World Finals

Aaron Pass is unarguably one of the toughest guys on the Road to Cheyenne. The CBR Road to Cheyenne televised tour veteran is known for his flashy, gut it out riding style. In 2014 riding with an injured hamstring and hips that were taped together, Pass made it clear how tough he was winning the Kansas Star Chute Out when he couldn’t walk.

When the chips are down or all on the line, Aaron Pass shows up.

“The bigger the stage is the better I ride, it gets my blood flowing and I want to be more than just a bull rider, I ride want to be the best and I just go after it so hard,” said Pass regarding his sixth qualification to the CBR’s Super Bowl of the season.

The softer side of Aaron Pass, who was selected thru a nationwide fan-voting contest as the 2014 “Fan Favorite” Bull Rider of CBR. He then donated his buckle to Hayleigh Lansford, one of CBR’s most devoted bull riding fans.

At 5’5" 135 pounds, the 27 year old bull rider is a left handed rider who Cheyenne Frontier Days fans will remember as the 2015 CFD Rodeo Bull Riding Champion and a bull rider they saw pull his rope seven different times in the Frontier Park arena during the course of the World’s Largest Outdoor Rodeo. Pass rode three for three during the CFD finals as well as going three for four in the CBR World Finals during Cheyenne Frontier Nights.

Pass, one of (if not the rider with the longest consecutive streak of CBR World Finals qualifications) missed three of the first four events during the 2016 regular season, is making his seventh World Finals appearance and comes into Cheyenne as No. 25 in this year’s standings, a place he is not familiar with after finishing in the top ten for the past four consecutive years including his personal best of third in 2014, the same year he led the standings for seven months.

On the day I talked to Aaron he had just received news of one reason he might be in 25th place, and not going in into Cheyenne in the top ten as he has for the past five years.

“I have been hurting a while, I finally went and had an MRI and the results are that six of the discs in my back are broken,” said the baseball player turned pro bull rider. 

Although Pass admitted he has reduced his bull riding schedule, he has been to 8 of the 15 Road to Cheyenne Tour events this season and posted 4 qualified rides. His 12 month riding percentage is 46.2, courtesy of Probullstats. He owns over 50 go round wins and 27 rides where he scored 90 points or better during his 9 years as a professional which includes CBR, PRCA, and PBR sanctioned events.  

In 2016 Pass has found success this year winning a PRCA Rodeo at Corpus Christi, Tex., two of the largest Cinch Shoot Out competitions at Rodeo Houston and the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo.

In addition to a Cheyenne Frontier Days win in 2015 he won the Caldwell (Idaho) Night Rodeo; the Dodge City (Kan.) Roundup Rodeo; the Omak (Wash.) Stampede and the Douglas County Fair and Rodeo Xtreme Bulls (Castle Rock, Colo.). Co-champion at the Tri-State Rodeo (Fort Madison, Iowa).

Pass is the creator of some of the CBR Road to Cheyenne’s most memorable moments. In 2015, he rode Mike Rawson’s Too Juicy for 90.5 in front of the grandstands in Cheyenne, a ride that Rawson will always appreciate, probably long after Pass. That 90.5 score was a valuable part of the winning combination of scores from three bulls that won Mike Rawson the title of CBR World Champion Bull Team and a check for over $100,000 at last year’s CBR World Finals.

Pass did not grow up riding horses, working with cattle or any of the other things that typical ranch kids do. Born and raised in Dallas, he is a self-proclaimed “city boy”.

Pass got his start in the bull riding world with help from his cousin Bryan Richardson, a three-time Wrangler NFR qualifier who is eight-years-older than the 25-year-old Pass. Pass, the athlete from the Dallas suburb of Kaufman, Texas finished his personal best in 2014, with a 42% riding average, twenty-five 90 point plus rides including his career best, 93 points on Norris Dalton’s Shine Time.

Pass has racked up over 50 championship wins in regular season bull riding and made the Final Four Shootout round seven times since CBR changed its event format to the tournament style rounds in 2013.

Pass is no stranger to the post season either; qualifying for his first Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in 2014 and won round 2. He finished 10th in the 2015 CBR World Standings after entering the finals in 13th place. Aaron has been to the CBR World Finals 6 times finishing in the top 10 four of the six appearances and whether he is healthy or not you can bet he will be there to ride at the Daddy of ‘em All.   

The 2006 UPRA Champion and 2007 CPRA Champion began his career as a Texas Regional Bull Riding champion and represented Hillsboro College in bull riding in the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association. 


It’s A Family Thing

Pass is married to Kaysie Beam Pass and they have two daughters and reside in Kaufman, Texas where in addition to his bull riding career, they are the owner-operators of salon and boutique, Tan Tastic.

Follow Aaron and his family on their Road to Cheyenne via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.