Tony Stewart hopes NASCAR will grant him similar concessions to what Kyle Busch received in 2015 to have a chance of making the Sprint Cup's Chase in his final season.
Stewart fractured a vertebra in a dune buggy crash in January, and is currently sidelined, with x-rays on March 9 his next checkpoint.
Busch missed the first 11 races last year after breaking his left foot and right leg at Daytona in February, but NASCAR waived the clause that a driver must contest the full season in order to make the Chase.
Busch qualified on race wins after getting into the top 30 in the standings, and then won the Sprint Cup, and Stewart is hoping for similar leeway.
"Whatever they decide, they decide," Stewart said.
"I would like to think it's going to be similar to what they did last year with Kyle.
"The biggest thing I'm worried about is just getting this healed properly.
"That's my biggest concern, is just making sure that it heals right.
"I'm anxious to get x-rayed next week because I'm very curious about what the progress has been like for the last 30 days.
"It's just a waiting process right now."
Stewart defied doctors orders to fly to last weekend's Atlanta race and then to Las Vegas on Friday, and said he was eager to get back on track and start his final season before retiring.
"When they clear me to do it, I can promise you I'll be ready to do it," he said.
"We've been through enough pain tolerance with the leg [Stewart broke in 2013] and this, I don't think it's a big drama.
"When you start feeling like you're getting sore, that's a good sign that it's time to get off your back.
"When it gets time to get back in the car, we'll be plenty ready.
"I've been driving a street car for two-and-a-half weeks now, it doesn't bother me, I just can't do it for long periods of time.
"We really don't have any clue how far this has gone since the surgery. I'm probably more eager than anybody to know what the result of this is going to be."