This year's adverse weather conditions and expected lower corn yields have not kept growers from entering the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) Corn Yield Contest (CYC) in near-record numbers.

Despite flooding in the spring, drought in the summer, and a sluggish economy, NCGA has received nearly 3,300 applications. Last year, more than 3,200 growers from 45 states entered the contest. The resulting top yields from farmers who placed first, second and third places nationally in the respective categories ranged from 408.2 to 224.8 bu/acre.

Based on conditions up to August, national yields are expected to average 125.2 bu/acre, down 13 bu from last year, according to USDA.

"Yields are mostly lower than 2001 because of several factors including a wet spring followed by a drought in the eastern Corn Belt and a persistent drought in the West," says NCGA Director of Production and Marketing Paul Bertels. "But the possibility of lower yields shouldn't have an effect on CYC entries. We've seen a pretty good response and part of that is a result of the discontinuation of the Iowa Masters yield contest, so we're expecting the final tally to have more entrants from Iowa."

NCGA expects to have the final tally the first week of September.

As in years past, the CYC winners will be honored during an awards banquet at the Commodity Classic, the combined convention and trade show hosted by NCGA and the American Soybean Association. This year, Classic will be held in Charlotte, NC, Feb. 27-March 1. CYC winners will be announced Dec. 16. For more information about the CYC, visit the NCGA web site at http://www.ncga.com/02profits/CYC/main/index.html