Just like a lab though there is no distinction based just on WHERE the animal was bred. It'd be like saying that labs bred in say New York were better than labs bred in Ohio. Its not the case.
I do understand the concept of mixing bloodlines and pedigrees and the value of pedigrees. You're correct that like other trainers I'm in a rather special position (shared only by other trainers and breeders of high end retrievers) where I can look at a dog's pedigree and bloodlines and be able to tell you if I've got a good chance at getting a dog that's worth anything in the test and trial circuit. Even then as you said it's still just a "guestimation" or an educated guess. I've had a few dogs bred from very highly awarded pedigrees that have turned out to be completely worthless as a test/trial dog. As a result I've had to sell them off - a couple of them at a great loss after considering cost of the puppy, care and feeding of the puppy and training time and resources involved for it to become a trial dog. Instead of being able to sell the finished dog for say $5000 to $10000 I had to settle for anywhere from $1500 to $3500. That's about pedigree though and if you deal with breeders who breed according to the requirements that we, as sportsmen, are looking for then it shouldn't matter WHERE the dog is bred just what the pedigree of the puppy is.
You know as well as I do, perhaps even better than I do, that if you breed two dogs that have great pedigrees you have a great chance of the litter bearing the parents' great genetics. Where they were bred has no bearing at all on those genetics. A puppy bred from master hunters who are also carry FC, NFC, AFC, MH and/or MNH distinctions in their names will most likely be able to become an accomplished and highly awarded hunter too. The deeper into the dogs' pedigree these accomplishments run (ie. going back 2,3 even 4 generations or more) will result in a "condensing" of such genetics and further increase the possibilities of the puppies inheriting the genetic traits of the parents and predecessors. Again this has nothing to do with WHERE the dog was bred or what language its name is in. My latest puppy, being bred from parents who were not only master hunters and champions but also came from multiple generations of master hunters and champions, has more of a chance of becoming another master hunter and champion than say a puppy bred from your average run of the mill dogs whose owners just SAY they're excellent hunters.
That was the point I was trying to make - its all about genetics and pedigree rather than WHERE the dog is bred. Sure here in America there are a lot of breeders who breed for conformity so they actually are actively breeding out the physical abilities of the dogs that they were originally bred for. That's evident in all sporting breeds. I wouldn't say though that you can't find a great GSP or GWP that was bred here in America and that you HAD to go to Germany to get them. As I've said before I've seen a lot of MH and FC GSP and GWP that weren't bred in Germany and were called GSP or GWP and did not have German language names. I may not train in that field but I'm not entirely ignorant of dogs in that field either.
This is who we are, what we do.