Veal, who last year became the first home-grown Classic winner, says that merely making Sunday night’s final is going to be a monumental achievement.
“It’s the race everyone wants to win, including all of the Americans, and it’s never been more wide open,” Veal told Speedcafe.com.
“For me and my family, it’s the race that means the most.”
“World Series, Aussie titles, even winning in the States is awesome, but nothing compares with this weekend.”
Tonight will see the first half of a total of 107 starters begin their Classic campaign.
A total of 11 Americans will be challenging at the blue riband event which are headlined by reigning Knoxville Nationals champion Jason Johnson and former Classic winners Shane Stewart and Kyle Hirst.
Other key US runners include Brad Sweet, Greg Hodnett,Terry McCarl and Wednesday night’s President’s Cup winner Carson Macedo.
Veal again spearheads the best of the Australian hopefuls, along with defending national champion and three-time Classic winner Kerry Madsen, James McFadden, Brooke Tatnell, Steven Lines and Shaun Dobson.
Former Warrnambool favourite Garry Brazier was a last minute addition to the field this week with the 1993 Classic winner to race alongside his son Jordyn.
Meanwhile a storm washed out the King’s Challenge at Mount Gambier circuit moments before the A-main was to set begin.