Meet a Dirt Bike Hauss: Zane Brownsberger

The freshman has been racing dirt bikes since his youth.


Contributed by Zane Browsberger

Freshman Zane Brownsberger flies through the air on his dirt bike. The latest competition he attended was in Council Bluffs.

Camryn Church, Editor

Freshman Zane Brownsberger has had a passion for riding dirt bikes since he was a young kid. Brownsberger grew up riding and competing across the United States in places like Wisconsin and Texas. Brownsberger was inspired to ride after watching a supercross race, and his dad used to ride as well.

The last time Brownsberger raced was a few weeks ago in Council Bluffs. “I don’t really compete that often,” he said. The racing season kicks off in the spring.

“My first year was interesting. There were some big milestones that pushed me to be the rider I am today,” he said. Brownsberger’s first win was at the Adair County Fair race. In the event, he beat Braxton Steburg, who had finished in front “nearly every race before I got my first win.”

Going into the 2011 season Brownsberger had the advantage because “Gage Steburg was moving up to the 50 senior class, giving me free range in the 50 junior class.” He won the first six races he competed in. Brownsberger ended his season with 16 wins, five second-place finishes, and two 19th place finishes. “The 19th place finishes were at a regional qualifier for the biggest amateur race in North America. That was the final step in qualifying for it, but I did end up winning the District 22 Championship for the 50 junior class. District 22 is the Iowa district for AMA racing,” Brownsberger said. AMA racing, short for American Motorcyclist Association, is the organization Brownsberger competes in. 

It was really satisfying to win it.

— Zane Brownsberger

Along with this, a parent of one of the other racers gave Zane the nickname “Freight Train Zane” because “of how similar I was to Ryan Dungey by being consistent.” Dungey is a four-time supercross champion and a three-time motocross champion.

Brownsberger’s favorite memory is when he won the state championship in 2011. “It was really satisfying to win it,” he said. Brownsberger got so far ahead in points that no one else competing could win. His favorite race was in Walnut, Ill., which was the qualifying event for the Loretta Lynn National, the biggest amateur national in the world. 

Brownsberger describes the competitions as “a whirlwind because everything goes really fast.” Practice starts in the morning, and after practice, competitors have a few hours before racetime. “Once the race has started it goes really fast,” Brownsberger said. 

Brownsberger started on a 50cc bike but currently has a 250cc. He was inspired to start a blog about his experiences after English teacher Allison Berryhill instructed her class to create blogs about things they enjoy.