sorry, i realized that was misleading after i wrote it. i was standing at mile 23 cheering.
but i'm training for a qualifier right now and have to get under 3:10 for the 2012 race (I'm 24). there are also benefits to being well under the minimum qualifying time. for example, if i can run 2:59:59 for the qualifier, i can register 2 days earlier than if i run 3:09 and pretty much guarantee that i get a spot.
if you're thinking about doing it, now's the time to start making moves, because registration is in september, and qualifying times are being dropped by 5-10 minutes or something like that for 2013