However, as Alaphilippe and his Deceuninck- Quick-Step team faded towards the business end of La Doyenne, Fuglsang attacked and broke away, eventually solo-ing the last 12km to the line, finishing 27 seconds faster than the next man on the road.
It wasn’t all plain sailing, though, as with 5km remaining and Fuglsang crouched low over his handlebars on a descent, his back wheel kicked out and the Dane seemed to defy the laws of physics by remaining upright.
After the race, Fuglsang said it was “a scary moment but [provided] a bit of adrenaline for the last part”.
Fuglsang’s heart-in-mouth moment wasn’t the only incident of the day. With 18km to go, just before the peloton hit the Cote de la Roche-aux-Faucons, Astana were pulling on the front and as they rounded a corner Ion Izagirre flew off into the trees.
Greg Van Avermaet missed out yet again, in what has been a disappointing spring campaign for the Belgian, with his CCC team revealing after the race that the Olympic champion had crashed on the approach into the finish.
Robert Gesink (Jumbo-Visma) was an early casualty in the race, abandoning after a crash on the descent. His team revealing the Dutchman had suffered not only a broken collarbone but also a fractured pelvis. Gesink previously suffered a broken vertebra in a crash on stage eight of the 2017 Tour de France.
Davide Formolo (Bora-Hansgrohe) finished second behind Fuglsang, with his team-mate Maximilian Schachmann completing the podium. Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) finished fourth, with Mikel Landa (Movistar), Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) and Wout Poels (Team Sky) also featuring in the top 10.
In the women’s race, Annemiek van Vleuten returned to winning ways, claiming the victory after attacking at the bottom of the Côte de la Redoute.