I use to train the Golden in my avatar with the Springer Club every weekend. Some of the folks there would jokingly say, " if you painted him white & docked his tail, he could win a trial". I had started him off as a puppy just like a springer, encouraging his nose & quartering a field for planted pigeons. He hunted pheasant & grouse every year until he was 9 & tore his ACL.
In reality, although he was the best upland retriever I've seen, compared to a competitive Field Trial Springer, his pace was methodical & he just didn't have the stamina spaniels are known for. The other shortcoming I've noticed w/ retrievers in general is that they tend to trail running birds slower than a Springer. I can recall several wild birds that took us over a quarter mile before he produced them where my Springers can usually catch up to them quite a bit sooner.
Like most retrievers though, he was very intelligent & learned how to use the wind, running a textbook pattern appropriate for whatever the wind conditions & he found his birds from outrageous distances. There was never a question of when he made scent either, the hackles on his shoulders would raise & he drove like a missile into the bird.
He would have been very underwhelmed running a Master Spaniel test.