Rossi - later on the receiving end of Stoner's “did your ambition outweigh your talent?” comment after a clash at Jerez in 2010 - feels his relationship with the Australian was never the same after the Californian encounter.
In the latest issue of Dainese's Legends
magazine, Rossi is said to have 'mischievously' commented: “Stoner started to hate me just because he lost [at Laguna]. After that, he always seemed to talk about the past, this race, because he wasn't man enough to understand that at that time, he lost!”
Rossi went on to win his sixth premier-class crown in 2008, then a seventh in 2009, before breaking his leg during 2010 and making an ill-fated switch to Ducati the following year.
Reflecting on the evolution of MotoGP, Rossi feels that the sport and its competitors have now become 'too serious'.
“In the last few years, the sport has become too serious and so have the riders. In the past, it was more just about bravery but now everybody is more serious and very athletic. They diet and train a lot and don't have a normal life. I think it's important to be able to have fun too!”
Winless since 2010, Rossi is returning to Yamaha for next season, where he will attempt to revive his career alongside reigning double champion Lorenzo.
The Doctor will be 34-years-old by the Qatar opener, but says his addiction to winning is as incurable as ever.
“The taste of the victory is different from all other things. It's like a drug. This is the main reason for racing. Unfortunately, it's very short-lived - only three or four hours - the next day, you need more. It never stops.”
Rossi holds the all-time record for premier-class wins with 79 since his debut in 2000, but his most recent win was at Sepang 2010.