The reason why marlin fishing is known as the pinnacle in sport fishing is made clear in these words from American Oceans: "Catching any Marlin requires huge strength and patience, however, the larger species such as the Blue Marlin and Black Marlin require near superhuman feats of endurance and strength compared to most fish, even other difficult species that are considered hard to catch."
Marlins belong to the billfish family. Wikipedia describes them as having an elongated body, a spear-like snout, and a long rigid dorsal fin that extends forward to form a crest. Marlins are known to achieve speeds of 110km/h or 60 mph in short bursts.
There are a number of species of marlin that are of particular interest to game fishers such as the Atlantic and Pacific blue marlin, black marlin, and striped marlin.
The largest blue marlin ever caught was in 1970 in Hawaii and weighed a whopping 1,805 lbs as this excerpt from the Hawaii Fishing News further explains: "Gail Choy-Kaleiki was fishing with her father, legendary Capt. Cornelius Choy on the COREENE-C when they hooked a 1,805-lb Pacific blue marlin. It is the largest blue marlin ever caught on a rod and reel and is not an IGFA world record because they were assisted by other persons in landing the monster."
Although far bigger catches are known to have been made, they are not officially recognized because they were not in accordance with the International Game Fish Association's Angling rules. Here are the certified IGFA All-Tackle world records for black, Atlantic, and Pacific blue, striped, and white marlin as listed by marlinmag.com:
The world record for largest black marlin ever caught goes to the angler, Alfred Glassell Jr. who landed a behemoth 1,560-pounder in 1953. The catch happened in Black Marlin Boulevard off Cabo Blanco.
The world record for Pacific blue marlin goes to the angler, Jay de Beaubien who landed his massive 1,376-pounder in 1982 off the coast of Hawaii.
The world record for the biggest Atlantic blue marlin caught happened in 1992 when Paulo Amorim landed his monster of a catch weighing 1,402 pounds in Brazil.
And finally, the world record for striped marlin goes to Bill Boniface of New Zealand whose 494-pound catch occurred in 1986.