No need to apologize, and it wasn't an insult, seriously I wish I could stay in that phase forever. You don't know what you don't know and anything your dog does is pretty great. It's how I felt with my first Junior dog. Once you start learning all the pitfalls, it's all downhill from there
You will learn more about dog training as you advance in field work than in any other venue.
Everyone has to start somewhere!
Just this year I bought a motorcycle and taught myself to ride, having never even been on or near one before. I'm apologetically naive and embrace my newbie-ness to it. It's liberating to try something new and realize you may not be great at it for a long time to come.
Seriously, the people you spoke of sound like total yahoos, and yes, you do run into that all the time in field work, mainly the lower levels. Fact of the matter is, 99% of the yahoos have field bred labradors. Labs are great. They are so gung ho and biddable, you can be the WORLD'S WORST TRAINER and commit sins that would completely F up any other dog, that lab shakes it off and comes back for more. They're incredibly resilient. You don't have to be careful, you don't even have to be good. BIG margin of error. That is not to say all lab trainers are like this, of course not, and the top echelon of field trainers have labs that are amazing, truly finesse trained animals with an incredible amount of detail and precision put into their training. But that's why they rose to the top....they are good trainers regardless of the breed or sport. If those same people had bought a border collie way back in the day, they'd probably be at a herding trial winning at the top level there, too.