Merighetti was timed in 1 minute, 33.17 seconds on the Olympia delle Tofane course on a day when wind slowed the favorites. She’s racing with a cast on her left thumb this weekend and will have surgery Monday.
Vonn, the overall World Cup leader, was 0.21 seconds behind. Defending overall champion Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany was third, 0.40 back. Vonn shrugged at the finish as if to say she couldn’t have done any better while fans celebrated Merighetti’s victory.
Merighetti is the first Italian woman to win a downhill since Elena Fanchini at Lake Louise, Alberta, six years ago.
Nicknamed “Dada,” the 30-year-old Merighetti made her World Cup debut 11 years ago and had gone 164 races without a win. Her only other top-three finish was second place in a giant slalom in Are, Sweden, nine years ago. She has also had three fourth-place finishes.
MEN’S DOWNHILL: In Wengen, Switzerland, Swiss ski star Beat Feuz won before his home fans Saturday, capturing a World Cup downhill on the classic Lauberhorn course.
“It’s a bummer,” said Miller, a two-time Lauberhorn winner.
Feuz was timed in 2 minutes, 35.31 seconds on the longest course on the World Cup circuit for a victory that gave him the lead in the downhill standings in his breakout season. Austria’s Hannes Reichelt was 0.44 seconds back in second.
Christof Innerhofer of Italy trailed Feuz by 0.49 in third.