Audi DTM boss Dieter Gass admits seeing Edoardo Mortara agonisingly lose out on the drivers' title 'is a disaster' after the Italian was wrongly penalised at Zandvoort earlier in the year.
Mortara won the final race of the season at Hockenheim but it wasn't enough to wrestle the title away from Marco Wittmann and subsequently lost by a four-point margin.
Audi's anguish over the title loss stems from Zandvoort where Mortara was handed a drive-through penalty for allegedly 'failing to a manage a slow zone' during the first race.
The Abt Sportsline driver was running sixth at the time but was denied the opportunity to consolidate what would have been 10 vital championship points.
The DTM race organisers [DMSB] later admitted that the GPS system, which monitors the cars, did indeed display discrepancies after an investigation of the incident.
"This was the bitterest victory I can remember. The ultimate disaster has occurred: We won the teams' championship and the manufacturers' championship, which is good," Gass said.
"But in the drivers' classification, we're lacking fewer points than those that Edoardo Mortara unjustifiably lost at Zandvoort. This is a really bitter pill and hard to digest."
Nevertheless, Gass still expressed his pride on what the Audi boss believes has been a 'strong year' for the RS 5 outfit after winning both the manufacturers' and teams' titles.
"Even though we missed the drivers' title so narrowly, it was a strong DTM season for Audi on the whole," Gass continued.
"We had the strongest package and won a total of ten races, plus two of the three possible titles. I would like to express my thanks to everyone who worked hard to achieve this: to the entire team of Audi Sport in Neuburg and Neckarsulm.
"To our colleagues in Ingolstadt. To our three teams, our drivers and, obviously, our partners."