Alexey Lutsenko (Astana) came out on top after duelling with Warren Barguil (Arkéa-Samsic) for the overall classification at the Arctic Race of Norway, beating the Frenchman by just one second.
As the race head uphill and the race was handed over from the likes of Mathieu van der Poel (Corendon-Circus), who won stage one, to the climbers, Barguil and Lutsenko shot up the GC with a second and third place finish on stage three.
Barguil led Lutsenko by just three seconds heading into the final stage four. Lutsenko followed an attack by Rein Taaramäe with 15km to go, with Barguil following the Astana rider.
Lutsenko then pipped Barguil on the line to claim more bonus seconds than the Frenchman. While Norwegian Markus Hoelgaard (Uno-X) took the stage victory ahead of his national champion Amund Grøndahl Jansen (Jumbo-Visma), Lutsenko sprinted for the line, opening up a gap over Barguil.
The Kazakh rider finished third, claiming four bonus seconds on the line, but had also managed to establish a discernible gap to Barguil, giving him an extra second and allowing him to pull clear in the overall classification.
Everyone waited with baited breath for the official result, Barguil asking the motorbike camera man if he knew the result, before it was confirmed that Lutsenko had successfully overhauled the Frenchman to claim the victory by just a single second.
Latvian Krists Neilands (Israel Cycling Academy) secured third spot on the podium on his birthday, with Lilian Calmejane (Total Direct Energie) fourth.
Odd Christian Eiking (Wanty-Gobert) trailed Steve Cummings (Dimension Data) by two points in the king of the mountain classification, and went on the offensive to claim the salmon jersey. No doubt this will please his family immensely, as the winner of the classification also takes home 500kg of Norwegian salmon. Cummings did secure himself a top 10 finish, though.
Lutsenko’s third place finish on stages three and four also meant he pipped Mathieu van der Poel in the points classification.
Arctic Race of Norway final general classification
1. Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana, in 14-59-27
2. Warren Barguil (Fra) Arkéa-Samsic, at one second
3. Krists Neilands (Lat) Israel Cycling Academy, at 19s
4. Lilian Calmejane (Fra) Total Direct Energie, at 23s
5. Hugo Houle (Can) Astana, at 40s
6. Sindre Lunke (Nor) Riwal Readynez, at 42s
7. Markus Hoelgaard (Nor) Uno-X, at 43s
8. Amund Grøndahl Jansen (Nor) Jumbo-Visma, at 51s
9. Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Dimension Data, at 53s
10. Steve Cummings (GBr) Dimension Data, at 1-12