After the disappointment of losing out on this year’s title to Francesco Bagnaia on Sunday, Quartararo signalled his intent by being the first race rider on track this morning.

A series of new parts were available for his M1, but the main attraction was the latest engine upgrades, expected to build further on the promise shown at the Misano test in September.

Instead, Quartararo was perplexed to find no power or extra speed over the much-maligned 2022 engine.

“I'm surprised because actually this engine was supposed to be a little bit faster than the one we tested in Misano and Barcelona [but] I found it was the same as [the 2022 engine] two days ago,” said Quartararo, who had been fourth in the race and was ninth fastest at the test.

“Especially on the qualifying lap. We compared the speed and it was the same. So we have to analyse what happened because we had two tests - Misano Barcelona - then Cal [Crutchlow] did Motegi and Jerez and they saw a difference on the [new] engine.

“But right now, there was no difference. So we have to analyse really well what happened.”

Asked if he was disappointed, the 2021 world champion replied: “Yeah, of course! It's not the way I wanted to end the year, but at the end something went wrong.

“It's not possible that in Misano and Barcelona we felt an improvement and today there is nothing."

Quartararo set a top speed of 327.4km/h, compared with a Tuesday best of 335.4 by Bagnaia's Ducati. The Frenchman's average top speed best five) during the race weekend had been 328.2km/h with a peak of 330.5.

Quartararo's team-mate Franco Morbidelli set 325.8km/h on his way to 14th on the test timesheets.

“I guess for Franco [Morbidelli] it was the same because I see he's also quite near the bottom in the top speed," Quartararo continued.

“I had only one slipstream, so that's why I went 327, but when you check [difference to] the top guys in front I think it's quite high so. We have to analyse.”

Morbidelli confirmed: "It has been strange because we were expecting more power from the engine and that didn't really happen. We need to understand well why."

Quartararo: 'A problem for sure, weird feeling'

Speaking to pit lane reporter Simon Crafar earlier in the day, Yamaha team director Massimo Meregalli revealed test rider Crutchlow had called the latest engine spec 'a rocket'.

Rather than pondering a return to the previous 2023 engine spec, from Misano, Quartararo reiterated that something ‘weird’ must have happened today.

“Normally this engine has more horsepower and in Jerez [a week ago] Cal tried it and it was clearly better. But right now [here] the top speed with last year is the same," Quartararo said.

“So there is a problem for sure! I mean not in the engine, but something happened that we didn't have this extra power that we were expecting.

“It was not a wasted [day] but, a weird feeling I would say. At Misano when I went through the gears I felt that the engine had something. Today, no!”

Crutchlow previously revealed the new engine had already gone through four different development stages even before the Valencia version.

Quartararo confirmed that he had only one new engine spec available today.

Turning to the other new Yamaha parts on offer, aerodynamics and chassis, Quartararo was reluctant to offer a clear verdict.

“With the aero package you feel the difference, but you can't really say if it's better or not,” he explained. “Because with the bigger wing you have less wheelie, but you don't know if you lose more in top speed than [you gain] in acceleration on braking.”

Quartararo also tried some rear seat wings: “I think it can be something interesting. At least it was not worse and my feeling was quite good with it.”

And the frame?

“I tried two runs in the beginning. Was really similar. Not worse. Not better… basically the same.”

There were only two Yamaha riders on track at Valencia with Crutchlow not testing and the satellite RNF team switching to Aprilia for 2023.

The next MotoGP test will be held at Sepang in February.