Just shows why Le Mans is the Mecca of motorsport engineering
I agree with this, to make a high performance engine last 24 hours straight and be competitive requires something that even F1 can't manage. I know F1 engines have to do multiple races, and quali and practice etc, but compared to Le Mans they're basically spec.
LM on the other hand, the engine designers alone have to consider engine configuration and how it will fit into the car, fuel (at least three different types), cylinder capacity, turbocharge? direct injection or not, and that's before getting to the details like chain or gears? materials? chamber sealing? All the things which are almost designed into F1 rules.
Then there's the cars themselves: Class? open or closed? aero and stiffness, cost, of course, crucially how much time is available.
And will it even get through scruitineering!?!
Also consider that F1 cars are made to do 20 near identical events, but Le Mans is a one off for many teams, the cars are made for that circuit, the rest of the series isn't nearly as important. The whole thing allows real engineering talent to flow and avoids a 'loophole exploiting only' scenario.
I also understand some people will argue Dakar is harder, it might be. I would suggest they're deliberately over engineered at the expense of performance and constrained slightly by their road car origins, but the job they do is admirable none the less.
Either way Le Mans is something special and even the team that comes dead last, you can't overestimate the amount of work, time, pain and effort put into just getting that thing to the start line.