Audi's Timo Scheider has admitted leaving Team Abt was an incredibly difficult decision after spending seven-years with the iconic DTM outfit.
Scheider, since joining Abt from Team Rosberg in 2007, won both of his back-to-back DTM crowns with the team in 2008-09 having never previously taken a victory in the tin-top series.
The German rejoins his former team, Phoenix, alongside defending DTM-champion Mike Rockenfeller to form one of the 2014 grid's strongest partnerships.
Scheider represented Team Phoenix as an Opel driver eleven-seasons ago.
“It was really hard, I've got to admit,” said Scheider.
“I personally said goodbye to the guys and in my little speech kept swallowing and fighting back tears. We experienced many unique moments and emotions over the past years, including some highlights like my first victory and my two titles of course.
“Everything I've achieved in the DTM I owe to Audi and the Abt squad.”
The 35-year old, however, hasn't recorded a DTM victory since Adria 2010 and believes a change of scenery could re-ignite a renewed title-charge.
“I decided to take this step together with Audi because I believe that a new beginning with new people, new energy and a clear mind will be good for me,” said the former double champion.
“The guys at Phoenix have proven that they belong to the top teams in the DTM. And I think that both sides are looking forward to what's ahead with really eager anticipation.”